Telegraph Forced To Issue An Apology

The Telegraph have been forced to issue an apology to Sunderland forward Adam Johnson, who scored the penalty just before half-time on Sunday and the incident that also saw Coloccini sent off helped to turn the game in Sunderland’s favour.

They then beat 10 man Newcastle 3-0 for their 6th win in a row against their rivals.

The Telegraph had suggested that Adam’s celebration after the goal – he had his arms outstretched like a plane and then fell to the ground – was a reference to John Alder and Liam Sweeney – who lost their lives when the Malaysian MH17  jet was shot down over Ukraine.

Adam Johnson Sunderland+v+Newcastle+United+1T2zjOJTYshl

Adam Johnson after scoring last Sunday

This is some of what the Telegraph’s Luke Edwards – the former Journal reporter – wrote after the game:

“Some claimed the former England international was making a spiteful and provocative reference to the two Newcastle supporters who died when a Malaysia Airlines Flight was shot down over Ukraine last year.”

“Johnson should apologise for any offence caused, even if was not intended as it was perceived.’”

That was nonsense and players celebrate like that all the time including players like Andy Carroll.

It would be somebody very evil and warped who would do that on purpose, especially because Adam Johnson was a Newcastle United fan when growing up even though he was born in Sunderland.

This is what the Telegraph have now printed as an apology and placed it at the front of Luke’s report of the game:

‘Adam Johnson – an apology

In an earlier version of this report, we included the accusation that Adam Johnson had goaded Newcastle’s supporters with an aeroplane celebration after he scored his goal, which we suggested was a reference to the two Newcastle supporters who died when on the crashed Malaysia Airlines flight over Ukraine, last year.

We now accept that there was absolutely nothing in the goal celebration which could be sensibly taken to have been a reference to these tragic deaths. We apologise unreservedly to Mr Johnson and have agreed to pay a sum of damages to the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.’

In addition, The Telegraph have paid a sum of damages to charity – the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.

John Alder and Liam Sweeney are treasures at Newcastle United and we’re quite sure that Adam Johnson meant no ill will – and the fact the Telegraph have apologized so quickly tells us that was not in his head at all.

What was in his head was that he had scored (yet again) against Newcastle after Sunderland has been pummeled for the previous 45 minutes of the game.

We’re glad this thing got cleared up quickly and that the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation was given a donation – hopefully a big one.

Comments welcome.

43 comments so far

  • catchy in norway

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:05 PM

    Comment #1


    Under p45 , even towards the end the tone of Eds posts were more about how bad he is being treated , not very often he would relate to how bad we are playing ,
    Now the tone of Eds posts seem to point that Shteve has not got much time , base on the results, I’m totally bemused by it all. It’s like Ed along with many others had made there mind up about Shteve without giving him a chance , all because it went wrong at Derby at the end, in which NUFC had a huge part to play in that, before we stuck our nose in down there he was top of the league flying, that is a simple fact.

    The legacy left behind from p45 and his whole coaching team was one of a losing mentality , defend for your life’s and hope we will be ok.

    Under Shteve in a short time we have gone from a team not doing anything but waiting for our next bit of luck , to a team that goes out and tries to play football “on the front foot” trying to force the issue.

    Now come the end of the season if we are not mid table I will eat my hat. And that will give us a great spring board to kick on next season.

    You can see that the team is together , they have bought into what Shteve is building and it is only a matter of time before good results follow the good football,

    I never ever read Ed coming on here with any Valid points , it’s either shat from other sites, or a lot of total drivil.

    Every previous Derby under p45 , it was some lame excuse, my boys were tired , we was to hyped , the team on Sunday did exactly what Shteve said , played the game and not the occasion. And yes there is a lot of debate on whether it was a pen or not , but pretty much every man and his dog has said it was never a red card, with 11 men we would have got something out of that game , the fact that we were down to 10 men pushing for goals 2 down with minutes to go is a huge plus for me, that a never say die attitude that we all want from our players and coach, more of it for me please

  • Ibizatoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:09 PM

    Comment #2

    Catchy…I think people get your views on that. I think the question, well mine way anyway, what is it that Ed had said in that particular article that made you say “Ed

    you prove once again you know very little”?

    Is it that he thinks that Steve needs to prioritise results over performances for a bit, whereas you think he’s best to do what he’s doing as sooner rather than later we will reap the rewards, as our performances are better than those under Pardew?

  • Munster Mag

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:09 PM

    Comment #3

    Catchy, i thought of you when I saw Palace on MOTD the other night. A big decision ( peno i think ) had gome against Pardew and he was steaming. I thought he was going to hit someone. Its a sickener we didnt go in for Cabaye. Ideal for us now.

  • ilovetoon8788

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:15 PM

    Comment #4


    I kind of agree with you. But right now, we are in serious relegation battle. Understand your view we are building something under mclaren. Ive seen some improvements as well.

    But we are in a results business. We lost to Sunderland 3-0. We didn’t get 1 point for being a better team and losing.

    We are running gout of games and we need to get to the 40 points mark. Playing good and getting zero points is not good enough.

    If we are in the relegation zone in December, mclaren position must surely be questioned. Anything less than 3 points against Stoke and I think it’s a disaster and we must be heading towards relegation.

  • Ibizatoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:16 PM

    Comment #5

    Catchy…That isn’t to say that I don’t disagree with a lot of what Ed says by the way.

    His obsession with the “Pardew Out Crew” has become laughable. It’s clear he was a fan of Pardew, but there are many others. Surely you’re not so arrogant to suggest that all of those people “know very little”.

    I’ve just re-read your post again, and something jumped out at me.

    “It’s like Ed along with many others had made there mind up about Shteve without giving him a chance , all because it went wrong at Derby at the end, in which NUFC had a huge part to play in that, before we stuck our nose in down there he was top of the league flying, that is a simple fact.”

    Of course people had an idea of what to expect. That doesn’t mean he hasn’t had or wont continue to be given a chance. Again, I’ve seen no serious calls to replace him.

    In addition, it wasn’t just his finish at Derby that made people not want him. When we were first linked, many didn’t want him. Check the polls.

    However, as for his Derby finish. It is a fact that they were flying high up to that point. It isn’t a fact though, that the reason is due to our interest in him. I recall reading he also suffered key injuries.

    Still, if we say it was Newcastles interest, which apparently he rejected, does that not set off alarm bells for you? Flying high, interest from another party (interest he didn’t want to take up at the time) and then that fall? Sorry, doesn’t fill me with much confidence.

  • lesh

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:19 PM

    Comment #6

    Johnson’s celebration was probably the well intended but given MH17, perhaps a little thoughtless.

    A few words from the lad to the effect that there was nothing intended in his celebration wouldn’t go amiss – not necessary but at least recognising that the loss of Liam and John, bless ’em, is an emotive subject to many, including him.

  • catchy in norway

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:20 PM

    Comment #7


    If you think that Shteve is playing pretty football for the sake of it , then sorry I think your as deluded as Ed,
    We have played good football and scored goals against some good teams , but I’m not sure what more could have been done in such a short time playing against some of the best defences in the prem, and not only the best defences , we have played all the best attacking teams in the prem,
    Ed should do some research first and put a bit of thought into his content, because most would agree , pepople come here for the people not the content,
    I come on here for the rapor with people like yourself , Munster Manx sparky and many more,
    Ed should stop being a journalist that he is very poor at, and start being a fan again, somewhere he got lost

  • sparky55

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:20 PM

    Comment #8

    Jamestoon from previous thread

    I think this is all about balance…

    …we can’t afford to go down whilst going through this change in philosophy…we have to learn how to grind out a win / draw instead of losing beautifully because there’s no point in going down playing the beautiful game is there?

    With a quarter of the season gone we have to get another 34 points to reach the magic 40 and with conceding an average of 2 goals per game that’s no gonna be easy.. To put that into perspective we’d have to draw 25 games scoring an average of 2 goals per game and win 3 games scoring 3 goals or more without losing one game in between.

    The more games we don’t get a draw as a minimum the more games we’ll have to win scoring an average of 3 or more in those games

    I really don’t think we can do that or if we do it will be West Brom Esq…which as we know has only ever happened once.

    From a pure maths perspective the odds will be in the 1,000’s for the above to happen and with only 20 teams in the premiership that means we’re deeper in the sh!te than anyone realises

  • lesh

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:21 PM

    Comment #9

    In saying that, Luke Edwards’ language in his article was such that he was reporting what he said some felt and IF that was the case etc…

  • Tsunki

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:24 PM

    Comment #10

    Yes Ed has little time for the Pardew Out Crew/Rabble/Shower/Gathering/Mob/Collective/Gang/Thugs/Bunch/Neanderthals/Ensemble/Party/Hooligans/Maniacs/Plebians/Peasants/Churls/Herd……
    …..did I leave anybody out?


  • lesh

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:25 PM

    Comment #11

    …. At least in the words quoted by Ed – assuming that’s not the earlier version the Torygraph refers to.

    In any event, I’m sure we’d all have preferred that there was no need for any Sunderland celebrations at all.

  • lesh

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #12


    You missed Catchy off your list of rabble-rousers!

  • Tsunki

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #13

    Johnson probably inferring he is free as a bird from his ahem err… legal… errr…complications.

  • optimistic prime

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #14

    I reckon we had more efforts on Sunday than the last 5 combined.

    Fair enough we lost but the players tried and didn’t hide, that can’t be said for the rest of this run.

    I’ll be honest Mclaren wasn’t my first choice and I wasn’t overley excited by him. Watching so far I can see changes, some changes aren’t quick enough for me but I’ll give him time.

    I don’t mind giving him time if there’s signs of improvement, I wanna see it not hear it. In Pardews time I can’t think of one improvement he made,
    He’d didn’t leave us better off than he found us, that’s for sure.

    Ps why are the papers apologising to a nonce for? He would be suspended at any decent club.

  • catchy in norway

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #15

    Ibiza ,

    Yes , I think a lot of people don’t understand football, and that are to blame for the state of the game IMO, any one out there who would take Moyes or big Sam Lambert as a manger clearly knows nothing about football, CLEARLY. These guys are anti football,

  • Ibizatoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:28 PM

    Comment #16

    Catchy…Not sure what I said to suggest it was for the sake of it.

    Look, I get your viewpoint, it’ll all be worth it in the end, and you have confidence the performances will improve in time to avoid relegation this season.

    Where I’m currently struggling is the latter part. I don’t have that confidence and as such, find it a bit cavalier to just plough on.

    My issue isn’t really with Steve, as I think you know. I think it was a big mistake in not making the appointment in January. I don’t think Steve was worth waiting for, but would love nothing more than to be proved wrong.

    As for Ed, honestly, that has been the case for sometime. It seems odd to suddenly now start expecting the blog to change. It’s always been about the comments section for me. No disrespect to Ed, he provides this platform for us, and I am grateful for it.

  • Tsunki

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:29 PM

    Comment #17

    Lesh – did I? Did I, though 😉

    Ha ha only kidding catchy.

  • Jib

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:29 PM

    Comment #18

    Poltroons , Varlets , Knaves , Americans.

  • martoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:30 PM

    Comment #19

    I have to say as much as I dislike the kiddy chasing makem that story was ridiculous and maybe shows up the standard of Luke Edwards journalistic skills!

  • Tsunki

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:33 PM

    Comment #20

    Ooh that’s a painful one catchy – to be fair though, Eds editorials have always been catch – all Repositories for journalistic content, news and rumour around the Web for us all to bitch and moan and poke fun about. I don’t think Ed treatment it is journalism in that sense

    The only time it gets to me is when he breaks rank with his neutrality and comments on sections of the fans / blog from his personal view, that’s overstepping his own remit I think.

  • lochinvar

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:34 PM

    Comment #21

    Good to know that our friends in the north west are living up to their reputation, ha !

    Comedian Bill Bailey had his “tour bus” stolen before he performed at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall.
    “Lively crowd @liverpoolphil last night – shame our tour bus was nicked from outside the venue! So gig not too bad all things considered,” he tweeted.
    The comic’s manager said two thieves broke into the production room to steal two laptops and car keys.
    They fled with a Mercedes Sprinter Splitter van containing crew suitcases and Bill Bailey tour merchandise.

  • Tsunki

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:35 PM

    Comment #22


  • Tsunki

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:36 PM

    Comment #23

    Americans ooh careful Jeff some of them can read 🙂

  • Ibizatoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:37 PM

    Comment #24

    Catchy…I think that assesment is completely to the extreme. Football, the sport, and footballing style are seperate issues.

    I am not a fan of Big Sam, that’s for sure, nor would I want him managing my club.

    However, he has a place in football (the sport). He just doesn’t play it the way you, or others like. He has been effective in the footballing world, as much as it pains me to say.

    You don’t need to play pretty football, to be playing football.

    By the way, I missed something out on my previous post regarding the comments section. I too enjoy our debates. I’d much rather debate with someone who doesn’t share the same opinion as me, it’s far more interesting. I know I’m right, I don’t need others to tell me 😉 (that was a joke…honest)

  • Thump

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:50 PM

    Comment #25

    @loch: It had to be Liverpool, like.

  • optimistic prime

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:50 PM

    Comment #26

    Even the mackems are slating this

    It says in the article safc have only won 20 EPL games from their last 101 and 6 were against us, Jesus Christ.

  • martoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:51 PM

    Comment #27

    “The only time it gets to me is when he breaks rank with his neutrality and comments on sections of the fans / blog from his personal view, that’s overstepping his own remit I think”
    If you look at the top of the page it says “News and Commentary On Newcastle United By Ed Harrison” – it’s his blog man of course he is entitled to give his opinion!!!

  • Ibizatoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 3:54 PM

    Comment #28

    General blog question…can anyone tell me what this seasons club targets are?

    I’ve read Penfolds letter where he mentioned “top 8”, but he also says “and to win a trophy”, so I doubt that was this seasons target, more Steves long term target?

    Also, we may need to stop calling him Penfold. I actually tried to do a google search for “Lee Penfold”, who turns out is a basketball player. Took me longer than I’d care to admit to realise my mistake.

  • Ibizatoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:00 PM

    Comment #29

    OP…Is that legit? Shoddy in the extreme.

    Can’t blame them for trying. Can’t get many opportunities to create memorabilia.

    That is a damning stat though. A 20% win rate, and we gave them a third of them. Jesus Christ indeed.

  • optimistic prime

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:03 PM

    Comment #30


    I think it’s real, it’s on twatter but I don’t have that i so can’t confirm it.

    It’s about their standard though and yes that win record is shocking, thought ours was bad.

  • Ibizatoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:12 PM

    Comment #31

    OP…You’d have thought a thank you card might be more appropriate on their behalf, but hey, what you gonna do?

  • optimistic prime

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:13 PM

    Comment #32


    I think the ref got flowers I think 😉

  • Ibizatoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:21 PM

    Comment #33

    OP…Pleased to hear it. Good manners cost nothing

  • AncientC

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:27 PM

    Comment #34

    I find it staggering that some of the people who agree we would have beaten Sunderland with 11 men, are the same people calling for a more defensive approach.

    Bring back the Pardew approach. Play defensive, get Wijnaldum tracking back all the time and ruin his flair in return for more cover that a good full back shouldn’t need.

    How about back to 1 up front too, that would help stem the flow a bit. Then we could go long ball to the 1 man upfront and concentrate more on chasing the ball around with an extra man helping out.

    Another interesting argument is the “you can dominate the possession and efforts on goal but it means nothing if you don’t win.” Well, generally teams that dominate possession and have more chances on goal end up winning games more often than not – this is why possession and efforts on goal are looked upon favourably, because that very style of play wins out more games than any alternative.

  • Sir Eric

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:33 PM

    Comment #35

    Colo red card overturned. on club site

  • Toon fm Exeter

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:33 PM

    Comment #36

    Bad news coco the clown wins his appeal

  • toonking

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:36 PM

    Comment #37


    your a very selfish person maybe the most selfish person on the blog, just because someone doesn’t have the same view about things as you might doesn’t mean they know nothing about football, it’s like saying you don’t know anything because your a norweign not an englishman.

    mac has shown more entertaining football than pardew might have shown but it doesn’t make up for the fact we’re still sitting in a relegation zone. The longer we go into a season looming around this spot the harder it will be for mac to continue with improvements and the greater the risk he’ll get sacked and these signs will be wasted.

    Pardew was crap we know but what some people generally described pardew being best at is managing to not have the worst of starts his came during the second half of the season when worry of a defeat wasn’t a troublesome.

    Ibiza said it himself the best time for mac to come would have been after pardew was sacked that way he’d know what’s wrong and have the time to make ajustments whilst the team are in a less worrying state but he decided to remain at derby which begs the question was it an ambition or just another chance the manage a PL club and gain wages?

    It would be a very boring world if everybody was the same.

  • Ibizatoon

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:42 PM

    Comment #38

    toonking…Let me just clarify that I didn’t say anything about Pardew being “sacked” – he wasn’t 🙂

    On Colo….I suppose that at least puts the matter to bed. Ha, as if.

  • nut meg

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:43 PM

    Comment #39

    Collo wins appeal, quite right too but the damage has already been done.

  • sparky55

    Oct 27, 2015 at 4:48 PM

    Comment #40

    the damage is not done…it’s the damage he’s about to do cos he can play again is what worries me.


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