Poor Officiating Robs Newcastle In 0-0 Stalemate With Metalist

Papiss Cisse scored two perfectly good goals in this game tonight at St. James’ Park against Metalist Kharkiv, but the same referee’s official in each half – disallowed the goals for offside – and TV replays showed Cisse was onside in both cases and the goals should have stood.

lonas gutierrez in action

Jonas Gutierrez in action tonight

There’s not much you can do about blatantly poor officiating like this, but it was even worse when it was the same official and the same player scoring the disallowed goals – two poor decisions by the referee’s assistant and otherwise Newcastle could have won this game 2-0.

And Alan pardew ill no doubt point to the two goals disallowed – which would have given Newcastle a good 2-0 win on the night.

But the truth is that Cisse also missed at least another three good chances including one with only 20 seconds to go in injury time,  when his header from only six yards out hit the goalkeeper, but he should have scored – and he was also clean through on 31 minutes but his shot again hit goalkeeper Olexandr Goryainov, who had a good game for Metalist.

With 90% of our readers in the poll before the game expecting Newcastle to win – this will go down as a poor result and only slightly better than a medicare display by almost a full strength Newcastle side, and it will now be very difficult to get through next Thursday when we will need to field a second team, because of the league game against Southampton four days later.

This was a chance lost by Newcastle tonight in front of 30,157 fans but Metalist Kharkiv also showed themselves to be a very good side, and why they won their group so convincingly.

Here ‘s how we saw the game as it happened.

Both sides started off playing careful and controlled football and certainly Metalist looked a good and well organized side.  After 19 minutes it was Gabby Obertan who did some good work and finished with a shot that was just wide of the goalkeeper’s right hand post – a good effort form the Frenchman.

And then a couple of minutes later there was a let-off for Newcastle when two Metalist players seemed to get in their own way in Newcastle’s penalty box in the inside right position, and the final shot was blocked by Krul with his right foot.

And then on 23 minutes Sissoko broke away and served up Cisse with a good pass,  and the Senegal man put the ball in the back of the net – but earlier Cisse had been flagged for offside and it didn’t look like it.

And if there’s any doubt the rules say it should go to the attacking side – but it never does – the referee’s assistant got his one wrong – period. TV replays showed the goal should have stood, and it looked like a perfectly good goal by Newcastle which was disallowed.

On 29 minutes a good header brought a great save out of Tim Krul as he dived to his left to clear the ball, and then on 31 minutes Cisse was straight through on goalkeeper Goryainov , but the goalie blocked the shot – but Cisse should really have scored and Newcastle could have been 2-0 up. A golden opportunity missed by Cisse.

Then three minutes before half time Sissoko had a half chance but the goalkeeper again blocked the shot.

At half time it had been a close game with the final pass from both sides in the opponents third of the field being the weak link of both sides – and this looked a very evenly matched game.

Metalist started the second half attacking Newcastle and for the first 20 minutes were the better side and on 50 minutes thy had a golden opportunity to go ahead but a Metalist player blazed the ball way over the crossbar.

Newcastle were still looking for the go ahead goal and after a fine run by Santon down the left wing, his cross was hit straight found Papiss Cisse, who hit his shot straight at the goalkeeper, and the Senegal striker should have done better.

A minute later Marveaux, who had come on for Obertan,  was almost through but the goalkeeper beat him to the ball.

And then on 74 minutes Cisse scored after good work by Sissoko,  but amazingly the same lineman  raised his flag for offside, after Newcastle players had been celebrating and TV replays again showed Cisse to be at least level and onside – another very poor decision by the same lineman.

The Metalist players had been diving around at the least provocation in this game, and then on 88 minutes a ridiculous dive by Willian rightly got him a yellow card from the referee, as he tried to get a penalty – and FIFA should consider red cards when players are obviously cheating like Willian was in this case.

In the last and third minute of injury time,  a cross from Sissoko found Cisse free just six yards out,  but he headed the ball straight at the goalkeeper –  and another golden opportunity was lost – and that was it – the referee blew the final whistle and it’s now going to be very difficult for Newcastle to reach the round of the last 16 in the Europa League.


Newcastle United (4-2-3-1): Tim Krul; Mapou Yanga Mbiwa, Steven Taylor, Fabricio Coloccini (c), Davide Santon; Cheick Tiote (Shola Ameobi 79), Yohan Cabaye; Gabriel Obertan (Sylvain Marveaux 62), Moussa Sissoko, Jonas Gutierrez; Papiss Cisse
Subs not used: Rob Elliot, James Perch, Danny Simpson, Massadio Haidara, Vurnon Anita

Metalist Kharkiv (4-2-3-1): Olexandr Goryainov; Cristian Villagra, Papa Gueye, Marco Torsiglieri, Fininho; Edmar, Juan Manuel Torres; Marlos (Willian 73), Cleiton Xavier, Jose Ernesto Sosa (c); Jonathan Cristaldo (Jaja 82)
Subs not used: Vladimir Disljenkovic, Andriy Berezovchuk, Oleg Shelayev, Sebastian Blanco, Oleg Krasnopyorov

Referee: Tom Harald Hagen (Norway)

Bookings: Newcastle United – Tiote (27), Cabaye (33), Sissoko (81), Gutierrez (86); Metalist Kharkiv – Willian (88, Torres 90+1)

Attendance: 30,157