English FA Cup

January 6, 2008


Stoke City

0 - 0

Newcastle United

English FA Cup

18:00 +00:00, January 6, 2008

Britannia Stadium, England

Referee: S Bennett

  • 94'

    And that is that. We will have a replay at St James' Park. An entertaining game but short on finishing quality. Thanks for your company, hope I haven't been too biased! Until next time...

  • 93'

    Ooh! Newcastle's first big chance of the second half, N'Zogbia gets to the byline, crosses and as the ball reaches Andy Carroll at the back stick he can't direct it home. Fuller is off and Vincent Pericard is on.

  • 93'

    The boss's son, Anthony Pulis, is on for John Eustace.

  • 92'

    Three added minutes. Then, Owen has plenty of time to hit it on the box edge but gives it to the far from prolific Nicky Butt who fires over. Shocking.

  • 91'

    Another good chance for Stoke! Rozenhal labours and Cresswell robs him, then slips in Fuller whose shot is saved by Given.

  • 90'

    Into the final minute. A goal now would surely mean victory for either side.

  • 89'

    Viduka rises to meet N'Zogbia's ball but it goes over. Now the Aussie is off and Andy Carroll comes on.

  • 88'

    Well cleared by Taylor, then Butt wins a free-kick, and has generally had a super game.

  • 87'

    Another corner for Stoke, won by Lawrence.

  • 86'

    What with Fuller's injury and now Rozenhal we may well have a good few minutes added-on time.

  • 85'

    Five minutes left now and I'm sure Big Sam would take a replay at this stage. Stoke boss Tony Pulis wouldn't mind.

  • 84'

    Given away again by Newcastle, Lua Lua careless this time. Rozenhal is now down after a strong 50-50 with Dickinson.

  • 83'

    Bit of a lull at the moment after a frenzied spell of Stoke pressure. Are they getting a bit tired perhaps?

  • 82'

    Michael Owen has battled hard but had nothing to feed on in this second half.

  • 81'

    Clueless attack again from Newcastle, who are hanging on for dear life at present.

  • 80'

    Newcastle are doing their best to gift this to Stoke, giving the ball away persistently and generally looking clueless. It's there if Stoke want it I reckon...

  • 79'

    Just over ten minutes left to find a winner...

  • 79'

    N'Zogbia hits an ambitious effort and it is deflected wide. Corner for Newcastle.

  • 78'

    Lua Lua makes his first break and is pulled down by Cresswell who fully deserved his booking.

  • 77'

    Finally someone beats Parkin in the air as Rozenhal clears.

  • 76'

    So close again for Stoke! Fuller works a great opening, shoots and it flicks off Taylor and just wide of the post! Corner.

  • 75'

    A Newcastle change, Duff comes off and Kazenga Lua Lua comes on, Lomana's cousin.

  • 74'

    That was very poor from left back Enrique who gives the ball away cheaply but Eustace can't find Parkin.

  • 73'

    Again Parkin wins a header from a corner but it is too near to Given who saves comfortably. It's all Stoke at present, but they need a goal to show for their dominance.

  • 72'

    Parkin's prescence has really upset Newcastle's back line, who are seriously wobbling here.

  • 71'

    That has lifted the crowd who are making enormous noise...

  • 70'

    Two brilliant chances in quick succession for Stoke. Will they live to regret those misses?

  • 69'

    Now Parkin wins the header and Cresswell has a volleying chance from six yards out but fails to connect. Any contact meant a goal but in keeping with his performance so far, he missed it. He is a disgrace to the game of football.

  • 68'

    Unbelievable goalline clearance! Fuller nips in ahead of Given crosses for Parkin with the keeper stranded and from four yards out Parkin's shot is blocked by Faye and the ball squirms behind for a corner. Amazing!

  • 67'

    Newcastle will be happy with that as Sidibe has looked sharp this afternoon. Having said that Parkin will probably score the winner now. And yes, I am a pessimist.

  • 66'

    Substitution for Stoke, Jon Parkin is coming on for Mamady Sidibe.

  • 65'

    Butt tries another long range effort there but this one flies well over.

  • 65'

    Confusion at the corner as Cresswell tried an acrobatic volley, eventually Taylor got there bravely to block his goalbound effort.

  • 64'

    There's a goal coming here, it's become very open of late.

  • 63'

    Great defending by Taylor after Sidibe releases the abysmal Cresswell who shanks his cross horribly into the crowd.

  • 62'

    Duff and N'Zogbia have swapped wings as the game becomes somewhat stretched.

  • 61'

    Appalling from Taylor! He broke clear and it was four v three but he chose to try and find Owen and his ball was cut out. Great chance to break.

  • 60'

    Great clearing header from Butt. Corner.

  • 59'

    Now Smith trips Fuller off the ball unnecessarily and the linesman flags for the free-kick. He's lucky not to be booked there Smith.

  • 58'

    What on earth happened there?! Taylor went up for it, then collapses with the keeper as the ball flicked the post, then Duff hooked it back in and Owen couldn't just rise to head home. Incredible!

  • 57'

    Viduka does well again, Shawcross pulling him back and conceding a free-kick in a dangerous position.

  • 56'

    Faye looked a bit casual there as Fuller bore down on him, he manages to get enough on it to direct it back to Given however.

  • 55'

    Well in Steven Taylor on Sidibe who was shaping to shoot.

  • 54'

    Another good ball from Duff cleared by Cort, then Viduka falls over in the box. Comedy.

  • 53'

    He's clearly going to score the winner now though eh?

  • 52'

    Cresswell starts the second half as he ended the first, by generally being awful.

  • 51'

    Rozenhal breaks well from deep but spoils it with a poor ball to Owen, who looks as dejected as ever.

  • 50'

    Oooh, decent effort from Butt, Viduka and Owen combine, the ball breaks for Butt and he drives just over.

  • 49'

    He's looked lively Fuller, but the ball just hasn't run for him today so far.

  • 48'

    Lovely turn by Fuller from a short corner but he just overran the ball when preparing to strike. He's down injured now.

  • 47'

    Stoke press early and force a corner off Rozenhal.

  • 46'

    We're of again, and the rain has got heavier if anything....is this Big Sam's last 45 minutes as Toon boss?

  • 45'

    Time is up for the half but Bennett still awards a free-kick to Stoke after a poor Smith tackle. Last chance of the half and Lawrence shoots wide. Join me back here in 15 mins.

  • 45'

    Rozenhal owes Duff a beer there because the Czech international went to ground ridiculously early and could have let Cresswell in. Luckily for us Toon fans he's been rubbish so far.

  • 44'

    It just hasn't come together for either side in the final third so far, when they have both had decent openings.

  • 43'

    Good chance for City! Fuller releases Richard Cresswell who gets into the box and slices his shot when faced with Taylor. He should have done better, but conditions are slippy.

  • 42'

    Stoke tried an inventive free-kick but it didn't quite come off and Viduka hacks clear. Nice idea though, and yes that last posting was a little biased. Butt's foul was poor but the ref really should have blown for a Newcastle free-kick prior to it.

  • 41'

    Steve Bennett has just stitched Newcastle up in fine style by denying N'Zogbia a clear free-kick then booking Nicky Butt for a foul on Fuller, when John Eustace's trip earlier went unpunished.

  • 40'

    Stoke could do with a bit more ball in midfield but they still look threatening when they break forward. They just need to hold firm at the back.

  • 39'

    Good old Steven Taylor is up for this, flinging himself into challenges left, right and centre.

  • 38'

    Big Sam is chewing gum furiously. I think that is code for 'I'm reasonably happy so far,' but I could be worng.

  • 37'

    Anothet good position for Stoke on the break but Ricardo Fuller just stumbles allowing Faye to intercept.

  • 36'

    Lovely move from Newcastle, knocking it around nicely before N'Zogbia shoots and it is deflected wide.

  • 35'

    Newcastle have started to impose themselves just recently, but can they grab a goal for their efforts before half time?

  • 34'

    For some unknown reason, David Rozenhal seemed to think hitting a dropping ball on the volley from an acute angle was a good idea. It wasn't.

  • 33'

    N'Zogbia delivers but Cort heads clear.

  • 32'

    N'Zogbia with another mazy break halted only by a trip from John Eustace, who is lucky to escape a booking.

  • 31'

    Both Duff and N'Zogbia are looking dangerous for the visitors as for once, Allardyce embraces width.

  • 30'

    The rain is now beating down on the Britannia. Typical cup conditions!

  • 29'

    Now N'Zogbia tries a shot from the edge of the area after Owen fed him. A good save from Simonsen, who has been excellent so far

  • 28'

    Cort had a free header from the corner and could only direct it back across goal where it hit Viduka and was bundled clear.

  • 27'

    At the other end Fuller races clear and it was two on two, Faye stood up well and blocked his shot behind for a corner.

  • 26'

    First real chance for Owen, who looked rather slow when faced with only Simonsen to beat. He tried to flick it over him but the keeper was out quickly and did well to save.

  • 25'

    Lawrence is, of course, getting plenty of stick from the Toon Army for being an ex-Black Cat. I'm sure he fully expected it.

  • 24'

    Nice break from Stoke, Sidibe charges forward into space again, tried to look for Lawrence but his shot was always bending wide and didn't trouble Shay Given.

  • 23'

    Nice intervention from Abdoulaye Faye there who looked very cool under pressure from Fuller.

  • 22'

    Good claim by Simonsen after Rozenhal's cross looped towards Michael Owen.

  • 21'

    Jose Enrique will have to keep a close eye on Liam Lawrence, who is Stoke's main attacking threat so far.

  • 20'

    This is shaping up to a very good, open game. Not something ususally associated with Sam Allardyce's teams it has to be said.

  • 19'

    Wonderful turn by Viduka inside the box to shake off Cort but his shot lacked the power to trouble Simonsen.

  • 18'

    Now Stoke have a corner and Cort should have done better when he met Lawrence's cross.

  • 17'

    Strong defensive work from Stoke, Duff's cross is cleared well, then N'Zogbia is closed down by Andy Wilkinson. The resulting corner is also cleared swiftly.

  • 16'

    N'Zogbia speeds down the left but just can't get his shot off, then Duff loses possession cheaply. Good cup tie this...

  • 15'

    Enrique does well to nip in front of Liam Lawrence after a decent ball from John Eustace.

  • 14'

    Poor decision by Sidibe, he made a good break into the Newcastle half and had plenty more space to run into but he opted to try and feed Fuller and gave it straight to Faye.

  • 13'

    Newcastle will be happy so far, they have quelled a sparky start from Stoke and are keeping the crowd relatively quiet.

  • 12'

    I must say, I do wince whenever Michael Owen breaks into a mild trot, fearing both his hamstrings are going to snap at any minute.

  • 11'

    Its been a bright opening so far and (beware commentators' curse) it looks like there will be goals, goals, goals....well one or two maybe.

  • 10'

    Rozenhal piles right into Cresswell and gets a talking to from Steve Bennett, luckily not a card though.

  • 9'

    Great work from Damien Duff down the left, Viduka feeds him and his cross nearly reaches Nicky Butt for a tap in. Good clearance by Carl Dickinson to deny the first goal.

  • 8'

    Good work again from Rozenhal who nods a long ball back to Given under pressure from Cresswell.

  • 7'

    A good looking break from Ricardo Fuller, who burst past Steven Taylor, but Shay Given came out well to smother the ball.

  • 6'

    Sidibe and Fuller look a good front pairing, both good in the air and quick to boot. Taylor and Faye will have their work cut out it looks like.

  • 5'

    Cool play under pressure in the box by David Rozenhal, clearing a Danny Pugh cross.

  • 4'

    Stoke's fans are making a right old racket...

  • 3'

    Alan Smith is lining up alongside Nicky Butt in central midfield, a position he hasn't looked comfortable in so far this season.

  • 2'

    Owen chases down a Nicky Butt ball early on but Steve Simonsen comes out to claim.

  • 1'

    We're off! Great atmosphere in the stadium....


    Two to look out for in Stoke's team; Liam Lawrence, a former Sunderland player, who scored at St James' Park in the derby a few seasons ago and who would love to put one over on the Toon, and Leon Cort, brother of ex-Newcastle flop Carl Cort. What price either of them bagging a winner?


    By the way, I should warn you, I am a Newcastle fan. Still, I will try and be as objective as possible. My prediction? I reckon Newcastle will win 7-0.


    Stoke's starting XI: Simonsen, Wilkinson, Shawcross, Cort, Dickinson, Lawrence, Eustace, Pugh, Cresswell, Sidibe, Fuller.


    The big team news is that Michael Owen STARTS for Newcastle, whose team looks like this: Given, Rozehnal, Taylor, Faye, Jose Enrique, Duff, Smith, Butt, N'Zogbia, Viduka, Owen.


    Can City, currently fourth in the Championship, round off a weekend of upsets in the best FA Cup third round in recent memory? They will certainly fancy their chances against a Newcastle side who can't defend or score. A devastating combination no?


    If the papers are to be believed this could be Sam Allardyce's last game in charge of the Magpies. Some disastrous form and rumours of player revolt have pushed Big Sam to the brink and owner Mike Ashley may well pull the trigger should the Toon fall at the hands of a strong Stoke City side at the Britannia Stadium.


    Good afternoon and welcome to the weekend's final Fa Cup third round tie between Stoke and Newcastle United. Kick off is at 6pm.