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Shearer Thanks Players For Courage And Determination

Alan Shearer last night rightly paid tribute to his players, who put in a performance to remember, when it really mattered for the famous Newcastle United club.


Mark Viduka – great game last night 

 There were some great performances from the Newcastle players last night, and none was better than the display of Mark Viduka, who led the line brilliantly for the Magpies. Mark hit the woodwork after just 5 minutes, which had almost immediately equalized Middlesbrough’s goal after just two and a half minutes. He may be injured an awful lot but this man can play.

A bullet header after 9 minutes by that mercurial Geordie lad Steven Taylor, from a Danny Guthrie corner, an opportunist  goal from Oba Martins on 71 minutes, within a minute of replacing Michael Owen,  and another well taken goal by Peter Lovenkrands on 86 minutes, were too much for a gallant Middlesbrough side, who will now probably be relegated.

But there’s still two games left, and as we know strange can still happen.

Alan Shearer was also at his best last night, urging on his players and reading the game well with some inspired substituions:

“I thought the players were brilliant tonight.” “I asked them to show me courage, determination and ability – and they showed me all that.”   “It would have been easy for them to feel sorry for themselves at 1-0 down but they didn’t let it affect them.” “They still had the courage and belief and there were some big, big performances there tonight.”

“We deserved to win. We were the better side and created chances for most of the game. We needed Steve Harper to come to the rescue a couple of times.”  “But I’ve said to them: `Enjoy being out of the bottom three. We’ve been there for a long time … let’s make sure we are not back in there again.’

“We forgot how to win football matches and the longer it goes on the harder it becomes. But they have shown me tonight what they’ve shown me in training.”  “I knew there was a performance like that in them. There was sense of relief when the third goal went in but it was a matter of getting that second goal, for then you could see the confidence in the players.”

“All my players were brilliant and they deserve all the credit they will get.”  

It has been a long time in coming, this first home win of the year, and only our 7th win all season, but it was an exhilarating display from the boys in black and white. The back four was steady, and Nolan had his best game for Newcastle, laying on both second half goals. Danny Guthrie had an excellent game out wide on the right, and it was his corner that Steven Taylor magnificently headed home.

Nicky Butt was steady in midfield, and Mark Viduka sublime up front.

In a season when the players have seemed to often lack inspiration, spirit and skill,  this was a stunning performance from Newcastle, and will be remembered well by the 51,000 present in a game beamed live around the world.

The Newcastle faithful were simply magnificent all night, and the sea of black and white, with flags and scarves on the night, was a sight to behold.

We’ve seen similar fan excitement at places like Liverpool, when they won their many European Cups, but this was a relegation fight, for heavens’s sake, and Newcastle started the game joint bottom of the league.

This could only happen at Newcastle, and we now have to hope the lads have gained the confidence to go on from here, and give the long enduring Newcastle fans another win in our last home game on Saturday against a good Fulham side.

That would be fantastic, and a fitting end to a nightmare season.

Comments welcome.

13 comments so far

  • shearerbliss

    May 12, 2009 at 10:25 AM

    Comment #1

    Morning Toon fans, fantastic result last night, and all the players played out of their skin! I hope we get the two results we need so Shearer could get the good press he finally deserves. As fro barton he was wrong sherer had got the tactics spot on yesterday and made bold decisions when he had to. Owen will not be a player for us next year and to be honest wont be missed by myself. shearer had shown confidence in him but he has not produced shame on him!
    Win on sat and we are up!. Howay the lads

  • Toon Graeme

    May 12, 2009 at 10:26 AM

    Comment #2

    Im guilty for slagging the dukes – and bow my head in shame – but at the time it was justified.

    Just goes to show the impact Shearer has had on the team and individuals.

    Shearer must keep the lads’s head and feet on the ground for Fulham.

    The pride I have is immence for our team and it makes me proud to be a geordie. No TV sound can do justice to the SJP crowd last night.

    I take my hat off to us all – and the fact I have no voice today is testiment to that.


  • stevep

    May 12, 2009 at 10:26 AM

    Comment #3

    Fantastic game, fantastic atmosphere and some big performances including Shearers.
    Viduka was superb and looks to have lost about a stone in weight, the players were full of running in the last 15 mins which is something we haven’t seen for a while.
    Could be that Shearers fitness regime is paying off – if anyone can keep the duke fit (and slimmer) he’s a bleeding miracle worker 🙂

    Roll on Fulham

  • batty

    May 12, 2009 at 10:30 AM

    Comment #4

    plz god let us beat fulham at on saturday

  • shearerbliss

    May 12, 2009 at 10:34 AM

    Comment #5

    ‘The pride I have is immence for our team and it makes me proud to be a geordie. No TV sound can do justice to the SJP crowd last night.’
    Toon grame I could not say it better!
    Dukes was fantastic yesterday and if he could show that form in the last two games he will be unplayable.

  • Hugh Jorgan

    May 12, 2009 at 10:35 AM

    Comment #6

    Magnificent !
    Roll on Fulham
    Will be able to watch the match here in Spain as usual.
    This game will be broadcast by Setanta Ireland.

  • Toon Graeme

    May 12, 2009 at 10:43 AM

    Comment #7

    Hugh – I will be in SPain for the Villa Match. You anywhere near costa del Benidorm?

  • Toon Sweden77

    May 12, 2009 at 10:43 AM

    Comment #8

    What a game! God I wish I could have been there!

    Viduka was class, the best I ever seen him in our shirt and what a header from Taylor!?! Could single out every player from this game but it would fill the whole page. Love to see the players play like a team and with first class fighting spirit – Thanks Alan!!

    Whos Joe Kinnear…?

  • Johno Toon

    May 12, 2009 at 10:46 AM

    Comment #9

    What a game! What a result!

    Im hoping now we can kick and beat fulham and get a point at villa and we will be safe ,

    What a feeling of relief this is!

  • bowburnmag

    May 12, 2009 at 10:49 AM

    Comment #10

    That’s why Viduka is so bloody frustrating. He’ll probably be half the player he was last night against Fulham. If only he were younger and hungrier. Genius touch and control, just a really great footballer on his day.

  • Micky Toon

    May 12, 2009 at 10:58 AM

    Comment #11

    Agreed on Viduka. Inconsistency is the downfall of many a team or player. For example look at old John Barnes. On his day he was one of the greatest midfielders ever to play for Liverpool and England. But his day was about once every six weeks. Talking of Liverpool, look at what inconsistency has done to them. They are a brilliant team when they all click, but just as they seem to be getting somewhere, they mess up. Whereas a team like ManU are constantly on their game. Consistency is the key, just being good once in a blue moon won’t win you anything. Perhaps a cup.

  • 51times

    May 12, 2009 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #12

    With Liverpool, the major problem was Gerrard and Torres getting injured. If they had stayed fit Liverpool would be the favourites.

  • Micky Toon

    May 12, 2009 at 11:16 AM

    Comment #13

    Hmm, my comment didn’t appear. Apologies if it eventually appearers, but what I said was –

    I agree with you there, 51 Times. But if you look at ManU, when they’ve had a key player out they haven’t lost their stride.


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