Darlow mistake proves costly as Newcastle slump to Everton defeat

Newcastle United

Barclays Premier League

Newcastle United 0-1 Everton

Shelvey s/o 90+4           Rooney 27

Wayne Rooney scored the only goal for Everton in a 1-0 win over Newcastle United at St James’ Park on Wednesday night.

Under-pressure boss Rafael Benitez made four changes to his side following Saturday’s 3-2 defeat to Leicester City, including Jamaal Lascelles who made his first start since August.

Everton manager Sam Allardyce made two changes to his side following a 1-1 draw in the Merseyside derby on Sunday, looking to extend his unbeaten start to life at Goodison to four games.

Newcastle dominated possession early in the first half, and came closest when Matt Ritchie’s booming effort hit the post in the 26th minute.

Just moments later it was Everton who took the lead however, against the run of play. Dominic Calvert-Lewin got his head on the end of a good ball on the right and it was parried by Karl Darlow before Rooney tapped the loose ball in from close range.

The Toffees looked more comfortable from there on, but it didn’t stop Mikel Merino from clattering the post with a cracking long-range effort in the 38th minute.

Ten minutes into the second half, the hosts came incredibly close when Merino’s shot was blocked before Florian Lejeune’s header went just wide.

Everton didn’t struggle to cope with the Newcastle attack in much of the second half, and the home side’s woes continued right up until the end when Jonjo Shelvey was sent off for a second bookable offence.

The result means the Magpies sit in 16th, just a point above the drop zone going into a tough run of fixtures, while Everton remain in 10th.

Don’t mention the number eight to Newcastle fans.. they may hate you for it

Last night’s defeat also means that Rafa Benitez’s side are now without a win in their last eight Premier League games.

Nearly two months ago, Newcastle sat in 7th in the Premier League and many were praising Benitez for the work he’s done at St James’ Park on a limited budget this season.

With Mike Ashley in talks with Amanda Staveley over a potential £300 million takeover, much has been happening both on and off the pitch.

Come January, Benitez needs cash to strengthen what is really a Championship standard squad. It is unclear whether he will get this backing, so the sooner a takeover is complete the better.

‘OOH’.. something heard a lot last night

Newcastle demonstrated their lack of confidence in front of goal many times last night.

Hitting the post twice, heading wide from close range and lacklustre close-range efforts was really frustrating to see from a neutral perspective and even more so for the fan.

There were also times when players failed to spot runs, or sometimes when they made good runs with the ball they failed to do anything useful with it.

Everton’s defence was tested at times, but centre-halves Mason Holgate and Ashley Williams didn’t have as much work to do compared to the Merseyside derby on Sunday.


Yes, that was what Everton fans were chanting at home supporters when leaving the ground. Oh the irony…

At the start of November, the Toffees were in the relegation zone and without a manager.

They spent over £100 million in the summer, and yet they failed in the Europa League and are only now starting to pick up form in the Premier League.

Newcastle and Everton’s seasons so far appear to be inverted. Benitez’s side started the season well, and now find themselves near the drop zone, while Everton are the other way round pretty much.

Just imagine what the Newcastle fans would’ve been chanting at Everton fans had the game been played in October..

Allardyce the right man?

The experienced coach couldn’t of really had a better start to life at Goodison Park. He has already been able to sort their defensive problems, and they’ve only conceded once since he took the reins.

Setting up his side to hit their opponents on the break in last night’s game, it was certainly effective and this showed great testament to his back-line.

Everton’s game at home to Chelsea on Saturday 23 December could be the time where we really see what Allardyce is capable of doing at the Merseyside club.

Man of the Match – DeAndre Yedlin

It was a close one tonight between Newcastle’s DeAndre Yedlin and Everton’s Idrissa Gueye.

Both players showed great energy for their respective sides, and looked promising on the ball.

In my view, Yedlin just edged it as he showed great will and determination especially after picking up a knock midway through the second half.

He made some great runs on the right flank, and was a joy to watch.

Newcastle United: Darlow 5, Yedlin 8, Lascelles 6, Lejeune 7, Manquillo 5, Merino 7 (Perez 86), Shelvey 5, Atsu 5, Diame 4 (Joselu 67), Ritchie 6 (Aarons 74), Gayle 4.

Sub ratings: Joselu 5, Aarons 5, Perez n/a

Booked: Merino and Shelvey

Sent off: Shelvey

Everton: Pickford 7, Kenny 6, Holgate 7, Williams 7, Martina 6, Schneiderlin 6, Gueye 8, Lennon 7 (Vlasic 67), Rooney 6 (Davies 77), Sigurdsson 7 (Jagielka 85), Calvert-Lewin 7.

Sub ratings: Vlasic 5, Davies 6, Jagielka n/a

Booked: Holgate and Calvert-Lewin

Attendance: 51,042

My next game

Mansfield Town v Morecambe (Saturday 23 December)







Late Ibrahimovic penalty rescues a point for frustrated United

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Barclays Premier League

Manchester United 1-1 Everton

Ibrahimovic 90+4 pen   Jagielka 22

Williams s/o

Zlatan Ibrahimovic rescued a point for Manchester United last night against Ronald Koeman’s Everton. The Swedish veteran converted a penalty in what was the last kick of the game, after Ashley Williams was sent off for a hand ball. Phil Jagielka had previously opened the scoring for the visitors in the 22nd minute, slotting home from close range on the end of a corner.

Manchester United started the game really well, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic coming close five minutes in. The striker broke through the defence to be one-on-one with the keeper and his shot was pushed away by Joel.

Jose Mourinho’s side played a good passing game early in the first half, and they strung many passes together before Jesse Lingard’s shot went just wide of the goal in the 12th minute.

Four minutes later the hosts came close again, with Ibrahimovic playing a good ball through to Rashford. The youngster’s shot went just wide of the mark, but had he scored it wouldn’t have counted as he was offside.

Everton had their first chance of the game in the 21st minute after some good counter-attacking football. Gareth Barry played a good aerial ball to Mirallas, who was unmarked, and the Belgian’s shot from close range was saved by De Gea to his right. The corner was poorly defended by the home side, and Koeman’s side took the lead as captain Phil Jagielka got a slight touch of the ball on its way in.

The away side then grew into the game, and Romelu Lukaku looked particularly threatening. He was on the receiving end of a good ball just five minutes after the opening goal, and his shot went just wide of the mark.

Manchester United did come very close to getting back into the game in the 31st minute however. Daley Blind took a brilliant free kick, forcing Joel into a brilliant save to his right before Herrera’s rebound went over.

United looked shaky at the back, and Lukaku got through the defence quite easily in the 39th minute only for his shot to be blocked by Young. Everton led 1-0 at half time.

Jose Mourinho decided to bring Paul Pogba on at half time in place of Daley Blind, and the £89 million man made a quick impact on the game – heading onto the crossbar ten minutes into the second half.

Marouane Fellaini came close for United on two occasions soon after one another, shooting just wide from close range in the 62nd minute and then having a header saved by Joel to his left two minutes later.

United continued to dominate proceedings at Old Trafford, and they thought they had an equaliser in the 72nd minute. Zlatan Ibrahimovic headed home on the end of a great ball from Ander Herrera but the goal was ruled out for offside – although TV replays suggest that the Swedish star wasn’t offside.

Five minutes later Mourinho’s side came close again, with Marcos Rojo heading just over the bar on the end of a great ball by Paul Pogba.

Everton were fairly resolute at the back, having brought on an extra defender in Matthew Pennington in the 67th minute – and they also looked threatening on the counter attack. In the 79th minute, Romelu Lukaku came fairly close but his attempt was prevented thanks to an outstanding last ditch block from Eric Bailly.

Everton continued to frustrate Manchester United at the back, and it looked like they were on their way to winning the game when Zlatan Ibrahimovic headed over on the end of a great ball from Rashford in the 89th minute. However, their work was undone in the last minute of added time. Luke Shaw’s powerful shot from the edge of the box was blocked by the hand of Ashley Williams. Neil Swarbrick pointed to the spot, and sent off Ashley Williams for the hand ball.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic stepped up and beat Joel with a well-composed penalty down the right-hand side to secure a point for the Red Devils.

The result means that Jose Mourinho’s side remain in fifth, with Arsenal able to overtake them if they beat West Ham United tonight. Up next for United is Sunderland away from home on Saturday. Everton remain comfortably in seventh, with a thirteen point gap between them and West Brom. They face Leicester City next at Goodison Park on Sunday.

Manchester United: De Gea 6, Young 6 (Shaw 65), Bailly 8, Rojo 6, Blind 6 (Pogba 45), Carrick(c) 7 (Mkhitaryan 65), Herrera 7, Lingard 7, Fellaini 5, Rashford 7, Ibrahimovic 7.

Booked: Young

Sub ratings: Pogba 7, Shaw 8, Mkhitaryan 6.

Subs not used: Martial, Romero (GK), Fosu-Mensah, Darmian.

Everton: Joel 8, Holgate 7, Williams 7, Jagielka(c) 7, Baines 7, Gueye 7, Barry 7, Mirallas 7 (Pennington 67), Barkley 7 (Calvert-Lewin 80), Davies 7, Lukaku 8.

Booked: Joel, Gueye, Barry, Davies.

Sent off: Williams

Sub ratings: Pennington 7, Calvert-Lewin 7.

Subs not used: E Valencia, Stekelenburg (GK), Lookman, Kenny, Williams.

Attendance: 75,272