Leeds 3 Newcastle 2 – Defensive Lapses Let Magpies Down


Leeds went ahead in this game three times,  but all three goals were due to some poor defending by Newcastle.

Forster made a terrible mistake when he dropped the ball and gifted Leeds their first goal after just 8 minutes, and then Williamson was badly at fault for Leed’s second goal in the second half, and it was the overall poor marking from Newcastle that led to Leed’s winning goal with just 5 minutes to play.

Newcastle did fight back twice, first with a goal from Steven Taylor from a perfect corner from Yohan Cabaye to make it 1-1, and then 18 year-old Haris Vuckic scored again in pre-season, after 79 minutes to make it 2-2.

We’re sure Alan Pardew will take a lot of good things out of this game, and again the youngsters on display looked very good, but he will want to sharpen up the defense before next Saturday’s game at home against Fiorentina – and that’s  probably the main thing coming out of this game.

These were the starting line-ups:

Leeds United: Lonergan, Connolly, Kisnorbo, O’Brien, Parker, Snodgrass, Howson, Clayton, Brown, Gradel, McCormack.
Subs: Rachubka, Paynter, Bromby, Nunez, Sam, White, Lees, Mendy, Bodor.

Newcastle United : Forster, Simpson, Taylor (S), Williamson, Tavernier, Cabaye, Barton, Gosling, Gutierrez, Ba, Shola Ameobi, , 
Subs: Krul, Taylor (R), Best, Vuckic, Sammy Ameobi, Dummett.

Referee: A Haines

Local lad Shola Ameobi was made captain of Newcastle for the day, and Fraser Forster was given a big chance to stake a claim to the first team goalkeeper jersey for next season, but Fraser made a terrible mistake after just 5 minutes.

A ball came in from Robert Snodgrass and the goalkeeper seemed to collect well, but then he fumbled the ball straight to Patrick Kisnorbo, who hit the ball home – a terrible clanger by the goalkeeper and a poor goal to give away so soon.

That will do Fraser’s chances of becoming number one goalkeeper at Newcastle no good at all.

Newcastle did not start this game well, and Leeds attacked and the Newcastle side were a little fortunate not to go future behind in the first 10 minutes of the game.

On 11 minutes Jonas Gutierrez was given the ball, after good play from Joey Barton and the Argentine had a decent attempt on goal from 25 yards out.

Demba Ba then looked good as he raced through on goal, but former Newcastle center-back Andy O’Brien put in an excellent tackle, and Ba tried again when he got to the loose ball but this time Kisnorbo robbed the striker at the very last moment.

Then former Newcastle target Max Gradel then headed the ball into the net from a free-kick, but he was ruled offside – where was the defense?

Newcastle started to come into the game more, and after 20 minutes Demba Ba played in Joey Barton, and then from the left wing Barton his the ball across the goal and Ba just failed to connect with a desperate lunge – good play by Newcastle.

After 26 minutes cent-back Steven Taylor got to a corner from Yonas Cabaye, but Steven’s header is off target, but he did well to get to the ball .

Four minutes later Steven Taylor again got his head on a Cabaye corner, but this time he headed wide of the target, but it was promising set-play work by the Newcastle side.

Fraser Forster then redeemed himself a little for his error for the first goal, and it was a terrific shot form the impressive Max Gradel who went down the left wing and cut in, but Fraser saved brilliantly and diverted the ball for a corner.

Maybe Newcastle should put in a bid for Max Gradel, the Ivory Coast Winger?

Newcastle equalized after 35 minutes, and it was that Cabaye – Taylor partnership again, with Cabaye’s skillful crossing picking out Taylor at every corner – and this Frenchman could become an excellent player for Newcastle.

Cabaye picked out Steven Taylor from the left wing corner, and the local lad ran in at the far post and put the ball home easily – another goal for Steven Taylor – and these goals may be the reason he gets a start at the back for Newcastle.

That’s three chances Steven had from corners in the first 35 minutes, and he put the third chance away very nicely.

Just before half time Leeds thought they should have had a penalty when Steven Taylor appeared to handle a Robert Snodgrass’ right-wing cross, but referee Andy Haines didn’t give it, but he took time outré to consult with his assistant – it could have gone either way.

It was 1-1 at half time and after a slow start from Newcastle and a gift goal from Fraser Forster, Newcastle came back into the game well and deserved to be level at the break.

Newcastle made no changes at half time and after 48 minutes Leeds captain Jonny Howson hit an excellent shot from 25 yards out that whistled past Forster’s left hand post, with the big goalkeeper down to his left covering well.

After 57 minutes Ryan Taylor was introduced for James Tavernier, who again had a good solid game, a little out of position at left-back, but this 19 year-old looks like he’s got what it takes to become a regular starter down the road.

A couple of minutes later – as Newcastle fans were shouting “There’s only one Bobby Robson”, on the two year anniversary of Bobby’s death, Leeds manager Simon Grayson made a triple substition and Robert Snodgrass, Ben Parker and Patrick Kisnorbo were replaced by Lloyd Sam, Tom Lees and Boldizsar Bodor.

On 66 minutes Shola Ameobi was replaced by his younger brother Sammy and striker Leon Best came on for Dan Gosling and 18 year-old Slovenian Haris Vuckic replaced Jonas Gutierrez.

And then a minute later Leeds again took the lead and it was another Newcastle defensive error that led to the goal.

Mike Williamson was trying to shield the ball out of play down the left, but Lloyd Sam robbed the ball from the former Portsmouth defender and Sam put the ball past Fraser Forster, more poor defending from Newcastle.

A good ball from Ryan Taylor was taken nicely by Leon Best, and Leon created room fro himself nicely and hit a shot from 13 yards out, but it was blocked by Bromby as Leon appealed for handball in vain.

The Sammy Ameobi showed why he’s such a promising youngster and the 19 year old put in a good crosses from the left wing and Joey Barton got to the ball with a flying header but goalkeeper Longergan made an excellent save as he dived to his left, as Newcastle tried to get back into the game.

Newcastle were pressing and after 77 minutes the lads were level again.  And it was yet another goal from 18 year-old Haris Vuckic, who we keep saying has an eye for goal, and the youngster was set up nicely by Leon Best and he hit the ball home well – and it was 2-2.

That’s Harris’ second goal of the pre-season and he also had a good goal against Orlando disallowed for offside, but TV replays showed to have been onside.

Three minutes later 19 year-old Paul Dummett came on in place of Danny Simpson, and that allowed Ryan Taylor to move to right-back, with the young Welshman fitting in at left-back.

But with five minutes to go Newcastle gave away another poor goal, and they couldn’t clear a corner kick and from the loose ball out on the right Mendy’s  cross put the ball home from a tioght angle – and agauin you have to ask the question – where’s the Newcastle defense?

Newcastle again tried to come back and Leon Best went close twice but the final whistle blew and it was Leeds who were the winners today.

Newcastle’s Achilles heel last year in far  too many games was the defense, and there have been no improvements made this summer, at least not yet, and it could again be Newcastle’s weakness in the coming season.

Comments welcome.



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184 comments so far

  • Thump

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:06 PM

    Comment #1

    Willo and Forster should take a lot of the blame for at least 2 of those girls each. We just didn’t look like doing much in truth.

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  • Toon XI

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:06 PM

    Comment #2

    This is why we play preseason matches.

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:07 PM

    Comment #3

    vukic is class as ive been saying all along, think we quality back up in vukic, abeid, ferguson, sammi tav the problem is we use the same old as in rtaylor, guthrie smith instead of using these lads who actually make a difference

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  • Toon XI

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:07 PM

    Comment #4

    I am guessing that today Forster just blew his chance for this season.

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:08 PM

    Comment #5

    williamson at fault for 2 no way him over taylor n colo

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  • Toon XI

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:08 PM

    Comment #6

    Spot on Davy – I pray Pardew has the stones to play the younger players in the prem in lieu of the usual cast of characters when it comes to second-half subsitutions.

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  • lee1892

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:09 PM

    Comment #7

    Although these games dont really matter it’s not filling me with hope for the up and coming season. Even the bench looked scarily weak

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  • Toon XI

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:11 PM

    Comment #8

    I think injuries (or lack thereof) will play a major role in our success this season. HBA, Ba, Marveaux, Colo and the like need to stay healthy for 90% of the season.

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  • Smooth moves Shola

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:12 PM

    Comment #9

    Too true davyb @ 3.

    Vukic is head and shoulders above Ameobi and Best, in terms of class.
    Tav is better going forward and more aggressive in the tackle than Simpson, not to mention quicker. Yet we persist with the donkeys and no-marks.

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  • Andy

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:14 PM

    Comment #10

    Could vuckic play striker role? I’ve never actually watched him properly. Was at the game v arsenal and he looked decent at cm. Has played lm. Can play AM as i think he usually does?

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:15 PM

    Comment #11

    shud hav vukic off the striker

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  • CynicalasEva

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:16 PM

    Comment #12

    /its only a friendly – more concerned that we are linked to Beckford – WTF – we get linked with the likes of Gamerio, Gervinho and Erdinc – but end up with …..

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:18 PM

    Comment #13

    its friendly results dont matter but yes its clear to see tav, vukic, abeid, sammi n fergie r better than simpson, rtaylor, guthrie, ameobi but will they get there chance is the question

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  • Thump

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:19 PM

    Comment #14

    Fergie is injured, davy. So is Guthrie.

    Glad to see some of the kids getting a run out – they were fairly solid today.

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:20 PM

    Comment #15

    i think erding will happen n woulnt b suprised if its this week

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  • Smooth moves Shola

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:20 PM

    Comment #16

    I’m still unsure as to what formation we’ll be playing, come Arsenal. For Fiorentina:

    ——————–Krul——————–
    Tavernier–Taylor–Colo–Enrique
    ———Gosling–Tiote–Cabaye
    ————–Vukic—–Marveaux
    ——————–Ba

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  • Tonytoon73

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:20 PM

    Comment #17

    Davy who would you play vuckic or hba as the player just off the striker???

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:22 PM

    Comment #18

    thump the point is the kids as u put it r better than ppl think n some shud b playing, sammi is really direct n fast will make it at prem level but vukic is the one, positives today was cabaye n barton played well so did ba

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  • manxpie

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:22 PM

    Comment #19

    Best looked good wen he came on good touches n good movement n wudda scored if barton left 8t 4 him far betta than shola

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:23 PM

    Comment #20

    play vukic there until hba comes back no problem n if vukic does the biz move hatem to wing

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  • Thump

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:24 PM

    Comment #21

    I agree completely mate, problem is they can’t have too much, too young, too fast. Look at Walcott.

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  • boater

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:24 PM

    Comment #22

    cynicalsEva – Erdinc’s not all that mate.

    Andy. The fact that you’re even mentioning vuckic up says it all.

    We’re in reasonable health defensively, not the best ever, but let’s not overreact.. willo aint match fit, but is still an able centre half over a season.

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  • Tonytoon73

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:24 PM

    Comment #23

    Davy fair comment

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  • Zangwill_Ho

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:25 PM

    Comment #24

    Krul? where?

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:25 PM

    Comment #25

    boater – vukic is getting talked up bcoz ppl r starting to see hes the real deal

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  • Andy

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:27 PM

    Comment #26

    If i have to see another article on newnow saying ‘The £35 million question everyone is asking’ i think my head might blow off.

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:28 PM

    Comment #27

    krul will b no1 i think he will play v fiorentina, vukic deserves to start hes scored 3in 3 now although one was ruled out for nothing

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  • jimmymagpie

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:30 PM

    Comment #28

    Of course friendly results matter – take it from someone who played the game at a decent level. If you concede goals like today, it affects confidence, and not just those at the back. I’ve been rabbiting for long enough about the need for 2 strong big defenders. We’re mugs on the cross ball and will continue to be so with the present personnel. Isn’t Demba Ba, our new super striker, prolific?

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  • Smooth moves Shola

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:35 PM

    Comment #29

    Pardew said himself: “….we want to breed that winning mentality in pre-season”. They definitely matter. You make glaring errors like Williamson and Forsters’, it effects confidence.

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  • boater

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:36 PM

    Comment #30

    davbytoon – I do know about Vuckic man – it’s a few years now since I left my cave dwelling 😉

    A couple of pre-season goals from him doesn’t have any impact on the need for another new senior striker AT LEAST! He will get his chances this season but talk of starting him from the off is totallt rash – he needs to be bedded in for his sake and ours.

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  • jimmymagpie

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:36 PM

    Comment #31

    As I told you here on Friday, Routledge is having medical at Swansea tomorrow, and I’ve just been told that Erding has told PSG that he definitely does not want to leave France.

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:36 PM

    Comment #32

    williamson was terrrible for the 2 goals

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  • Tonytoon73

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:37 PM

    Comment #33

    Jimmy magpie I remember a couple of months back when you were on about Nolan and bartons contracts and everyone was slagging you off. Well it looks as if you were spot on mate.

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  • geoff777

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:38 PM

    Comment #34

    No Colo, Tiote & Enrique so nothing to worry about really.

    You learn more from losing in pre-season than cruising to easy wins.

    HWTL

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  • Andy

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:38 PM

    Comment #35

    Joey7Barton Joseph Barton
    If only we as players could tell the fans exactly how it is, without them above fining us lots of money. There will be a time and a place.

    God! Our club is a circus

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  • Desange

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:38 PM

    Comment #36

    I hope this highlights the need for another cb
    We only have colo taylor and willo
    Need at least 4 quality cb i think

    Shoplist now
    ST
    LB
    CB
    RW?

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  • davybtoon

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:38 PM

    Comment #37

    i got told the same bout nolan n barton n despite what there saying they still want shot of barton

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  • NUFCFAN76

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:40 PM

    Comment #38

    Morning lads,

    Caught the end of the match. Sounded like a good match to sharpen us up against pretty good opposition. One thing: just what were FF’s problems with the goals? He fumble, not come out in time, what?

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  • jimmymagpie

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:40 PM

    Comment #39

    Boater – agree with your comments at 30, but I have a feeling that we ain’t going to finish up with very much. Even if Moyes was willing to sell Beckford, the price he would want is more than the fat man will pay. Brace yourself for that prolific striker Cameron Jerome, or Freddie Sears of West Ham.I was given the last name this afternoon, but not from my usual source, so take it or leave it.

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  • NUFCFAN76

    Jul 31, 2011 at 4:43 PM

    Comment #40

    @ 35 – Being a true fan you sign the lifetime contract which entails misery and exhilaration of unequal amounts through a never ending three ring circus. It’s why we keep coming back, LOL.

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