The party’s over: Norwich City v Newcastle United match report/highlights/interviews etc…

Posted on December 11th, 2011 | 30 Comments |

Highlights of our disappointing 4-2 defeat at the hands of Delia Smith’s Canaries at Carrow Road. As usual, I will endeavour to update these when better, longer ones become available.

Alan Pardew went into this game matching his opponents with a two big lads upfront appraoch, forsaking Ben Arfa for the silky skills of Shola Ameobi. However despite their good work upfront, a patched up Magpies’ defence found themselves outmuscled in the air by the powerful Norwich frontmen, Steve Morison and Grant Holt, who scored three goals between them in this 4-2 victory for the home side.

Newcastle did settle into the game more quickly than Norwich in the first ten minutes, but there were no big chances either way. The first real shot coming from Cabaye in the ninth minute after a fairly poor lay off from Ba, but it was straight at the Norwich keeper. However there was a scary moment for the Magpies fairly early in the game when Davide Santon handled the ball in the area. The referee didn’t give a penalty, but after looking at it a few times, both Santon and Newcastle United were very lucky to get away with that one!

However the game finally started to go Norwich’s way in the 39th minute. Referee Martin Atkinson judged that Krul carried the ball over thene, but it didn’t look like he had from what I could see. In what was to become a pattern, the resulting corner which shouldn’t have been was lofted into the box for a header. This one didn’t go in first time, but rebounded for a scrappy exchange close to Tim Krul’s goal line. Hoolahan got a final touch which eventually took it over for Norwich’s first goal. Norwich City 1 – 0 Newcastle United.

Only a few minutes later though, Ba struck back as the half time whistle loomed. After being picked out with a great Cabaye pass he assuredly took the ball down with his first touch, then dispatched a cool finish below the legs goalkeeper John Ruddy and into the bottom corner.

Half time: Norwich City 1 – 1 Newcastle United.

Second half.

On the hour mark, a truly disastrous spell for the Magpies got underway when Grant Holt put the home side into the lead once more. His initial headed effort was well saved by Tim Krul, however it came back to him and he made no mistake with his second header as Newcastle were dominated in the air. Norwich City 2 – 1 Newcastle United.

Only two or three minutes later, Steve Morison then piled on the agony for us with another header. After Dan Gosling ran on to ball, kicking it forward much too powerfully and handing possession straight to Norwich midfielder Andrew Crofts. Crofts then proceeded to put in an excellent cross into the box for Steve Morison to head home with an equally excellent finish. Norwich City 3 – 1 Newcastle United.

Things didn’t get any easier either when Dan Gosling got himself sent off either for a late, feet up challenge on Russell Martin. He was already on a yellow for an earlier indiscretion, but this was a straight red (and a three game suspension) in what was a fairly awful afternoon generally for the ex Evertonian. A long spell on Alan Pardew’s naughty step beckons, or it should anyway.

It wasn’t quite over though. To our credit, we did a fairly remarkable job of keeping Norwich under some fairly decent spells of pressure with only ten men, and Demba Ba pulled another one back five minutes after the sending off in the 70th minute. Ameobi saw the ball early, dispossessing Norwich’s Zak Whitbread then picking out Ba brilliantly with his great diagonal pass through the Norwich defence. This left Ba to jink past one Norwich defender, then dispatching another great finish past Ruddy in the Norwich goal. Some very good attacking play overall from the big lads upfront, It was just a shame that we were conceeding goals more quickly than we could score them! Norwich City 3 – 2 Newcastle United.

It was not to be however. Although Ba pulled back a couple, it was not enough to make up for our deficiencies at the other end. In the 83rd minute, the Coup de grace was finally administered with another typical Norwich goal, another close range free header when Grant Holt connected with an excellent Andrew Crofts corner. All that was left was a very quick trot around for Alan Smith and Shane Ferguson in injury time, and that was that.

Final Score: Norwich City 4 – 2 Newcastle United.


Despite Norwich’s undoubted aerial dominance in the box, there should be no witchhunt for our makeshift centre backs, Perch and Simpson. Whilst they hardly excelled, not all of the blame should for the defeat should rest on their shoulders just because they were the replacements for Steven Taylor and Fabricio Coloccini. If anything, Krul who was having a fairly poor game by his previously high standards too, along with Dan Gosling of course. On the back of so many excellent performances from the flying Dutchman, I suppose it had to come at some stage though. There were one or two others too, but certainly not Demba Ba and Shola Ameobi.

Whilst Demba Ba will be one of the few to win plaudits from this game for yet another brace of goals, a special mention really should go to Shola Ameobi for his good passing, distribution and the way he worked with Ba in attack. Not least when the Fenham Eusebio brilliantly dispossessed Norwich’s Whitbread and laid on Ba for that second goal described above.

Finally, my apologies for the relatively brief match report this week, though some will be thankful for that no doubt!


Norwich City (4-4-2): John Ruddy (G), Russell Martin, Steve Morison, Zak Whitbread, Andrew Crofts, Grant Holt (C), Andrew Surman (Oli Johnson 80), Wes Hoolahan, David Fox, Marc Tierney, Kyle Naughton.

Subs: Declan Rudd, Oli Johnson, Simeon Jackson, Anthony Pilkington, Elliot Bennett, Leon Barnett, Aaron Wilbraham.

Newcastle United (4-4-2): Tim Krul (G), Ryan Taylor, James Perch, Danny Simpson, Davide Santon; Gabriel Obertan (Sammy Ameobi 82), Dan Gosling, Yohan Cabaye, Jonas Gutierrez (c), Shola Ameobi, Demba Ba

Subs: Rob Elliot, Shane Ferguson, Alan Smith, Sammy Ameobi, Hatem Ben Arfa, Peter Lovenkrands, Leon Best

Referee: Martin Atkinson.

Match Stats

Goals: Wes Hoolahan (39), Demba Ba (45, 70), Grant Holt (60, 83), Steve Morison (63).
Yellow cards: Andrew Crofts (15), David Fox (35), Shola Ameobi (40), Wes Hoolahan (54), Dan Gosling (57).
Red cards: Dan Gosling (straight red – 70).
Possession: Norwich City 52.4%, Newcastle United 47.6%.

Post match interviews.

Alan Pardew has another moan at injuries refs and such.

Norwich City manager, Paul Lambert, thinks his side thouroughly deserved the win.

NUFCBlog Author: workyticket workyticket has written 1093 articles on this blog.

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30 Responses

  1. Half of the team played poorly. Obertan was guilty a number of times of darting away and then not looking up and missing opportunities. He needs to take a look at Sholas pass to Ba for the second goal.

    One good thing this run has shown is that it has shown where we are lacking in the squad. We desperately need another class centre half, another winger and another striker.

  2. For our next game we should bounce back. Swansea appear to be a real footballing team playing the ball on the ground and not reliant on hosting balls to big lumps in the middle. Although Swansea haven’t been good on the road they are dangerous as they can keep the ball and pass the ball around really well.

    Hopefully Colo will be back and perhaps Williamson but perhaps no Tiote or Cabaye. My team would be:

    Simpson – Williamson – Colo – Santon
    Raylor – Meidi – Ben Arfa – Jonas
    Shola – Ba

    I was very dissapointed with Obertan. He doesn’t appear to have good spatial awareness. He has the ability to outpace most defenders but yesterday he didn’t and he always seems to leave it too late to cross the ball. I would play Raylor as he can cross the ball, tackle and support our makeshift central midfield unlike Obertan most of the time.

    I would keep Santon as he looked very accomplished in the left back position. I would also play Ben Arfa as Swansea are the type of footballing team that will leave space for Ben Arfa to exploit. I have been very impressed with young Abeid on his only senior outing and his reserve team performances. Ba and Shola worked well together yesterday and would keep them together.

    As every team goes through a bad patch, hopefully ours is now over.

  3. Kamar – whys Cabeye missing next game? If Ben Arfa is playing center mid i would rather see smithy alongside for a bit of bite. Agree with Raylor right wing if we have shola and ba up front

  4. Darlo,

    Pardew said in an aftermatch interview that Cabaye will be suspended for the next game. I hadn’t thought he had clocked up that many yellow cards, but perhaps Pardew can’t count.

    I thought about Smudger but surely we don’t want to have two successive games with only 10 men! Anyhow, Abeid is our future, Smith is our past.

  5. Phisix says:
    December 11, 2011 at 3:58 pm

    “So he is not suspended then?”

    He can’t be suspended Phisix. He has three yellow cards in the Premiership plus one from the League Cup and that is fully up to date.

  6. It was all too predictable really….We knew Norwich were bringing back Houlahan for his creative ability against what they knew would be a makeshift defence. And they had their two battering rams up front against a lightweight centre in the United defence.
    There were pluses though for us. After Santon’s performance at LB – how can Pardew put Taylor R back there now?? Ba again showed why he is a contender for bargain signing of the century. And even Shola looked interested.
    But Obertan has to learn to stop running into situations it’s imposible to escape from!!

  7. Aye UTD111, the two “battering rams” as you call them did get most of the attention with their three goals, but Hoolahan was also important and was underrated.

    On the subject of Santon, one or two others have said that too, but personally I didn’t see it. He should have been there to stop Crofts before he set up Morison’s goal, and he was very lucky not to give away a penalty amongst other things. I’m not having having a go at Santon, and he could be an excellent player in time. Like, say, Enrique at NUFC before him and many other foreign imports at many Premiership clubs, he may need a little time to acclimatise, but I can’t agree that he put some kind of great performance yesterday. Going by that alone, I still think that he has some way to go. He may do this sooner, or he may do it later.

  8. Just back from a pleasant weekend in the Wetlands (which aren’t that wet nowadays) and my No.1 complaint about yesterday’s game is…………………….Pardwho.

    Yes I know everyone will say he’s the best thing since sliced bread but……………..

    1. If Santon played reasonably well yesterday (IMO he wasnt too shabby) then WTF have we waited for a defensive crisis before playing him at LB ?

    2. When you’re playing with two makeshift centre backs why choose to go 4-4-2 against a side who are aerially well blessed ? We should have played a more defensive line, protecting the two CB’s and raiding on the break.

    3. On the 4-4-2 subject, wtf do we play that formation when we have no players capable of (consistently) delivering a decent cross ?

    Norwich out crossed us yesterday and provided enough ammunition for those in the middle. If we’re gonna play 4-4-2 then Pardwho has to make sure he has players capable of delivering !

    For 1 year on IMO we’re no further forward.

  9. On the subject of Santon, I’m confused !
    What i saw was a good technical player, who looked comfortable on the ball, has a good turn of speed and was for the most part defensively sound.
    A player who reminded me of Enrique, who linked well with Jonas and is capeable of going forward.
    Yet one guy states, he should keep his hands/arms down in the box, yes Kamar ! i’m sure he will pay attention to that in future ?
    And Workey obviously was’nt impressed and suggests, “in time” he might be an excellent player.
    Erm exactly how much time ?
    We have this myth surroundind continental players, especially defenders, that it takes a season to adapt to the speed and physicality of the game here.
    Well thats just plain bulls**t, if the guy can play for a top Italian “Seria A” side plus the Italian U21’s, i mean c’mon the Italians invented defence.
    It took our genius manager until we ran out of defenders before he got a start, had a very good game, but obviously not good enough for some to start.
    C’mon folks, who else should be playing in the position this guy was bought for and how is he supposed to fit into the side if he never gets a start ?

  10. So it’s Swansea next eh !
    Nice footballing side with some impressive youngsters, hopefull a more entertaing game.
    Depending on who we have available, what with Gosling out due to a red card, do we play if Tiote is’nt available ?
    I have more than once suggested Jonas to fill the role, he’s got both the engine and defensive abilities, why not ?
    How about,

    Should have enogh skill in midfield to feed our frontrunners.
    Having Jonas in the sweeper role will help the defence.
    Young Ferguson can fill either defensively or on the wing.
    Perch anywhere across the back four.
    Obertan or Sammy as wingers.
    Being Swansea is a relatively young side, we need a bit of pace and the three midfielders behind Ba and Shola should be an interesting and skilled combination.
    Of course theres no knowing who Pardew will play and perhaps we will see Tiote ?
    Just like to get a look at Abeid, from what I hear he’s gonna be some player.

  11. chuck says:

    December 12, 2011 at 2:57 am

    ” And Workey obviously was’nt impressed and suggests, “in time” he might be an excellent player.
    Erm exactly how much time ?”

    Well, I was and I wasn’t Chuck. Yes, he does look nice for a defender when he trotting around with the ball, but when it came down to the nuts and bolts of his defensive game, he didn’t seem to be quite there yet. Point taken about Italian defenders but even they need time to adapt to the Premiership sometimes, and sometimes not. As talented as he might be, he was having problems with his game in Italy and it was more than just competition with other, very illustrious full backs at Internazionale which led to him being sent to Cesena on loan.

    I telt ye man! I divven’t knaa how long, it could be in a few games. I’m not saying that he shouldn’t be played and get a chance to fit into the side either.

  12. Andymac

    ..We should have played a more defensive line, protecting the two CB’s and raiding on the break..’

    As you were there at the match you may not have heard the Sky commentator say that Newcastle were playing a high line because our CBs were much quicker than their two centre forwards and therefore would quite easily prevent the Norwich players running past them on goal. The commentators seem to think that Pardew had the right tactics given his weakness in central defence.

    As three of the goals were from set pieces the real culprits were Ba and Shola as these two were are biggest players who could match Norwich’s big forwards. The only goal scored by Norwich in open play was a result of a wonderful sliderule pass to their winger who was in a perfect position to whip in a cross. Pity it was Gosling who supplied the pass.

  13. Worky @ 10

    ‘,,Like, say, Enrique at NUFC before him and many other foreign imports at many Premiership clubs, he may need a little time to acclimatise..’

    Yep, I also remember the howls of protest after the poisoned dwarf paid a huge transfer fee and high wages for a useless centre half who was no longer a regular at the heart of the Argentine national side !

  14. sad news that a great lad BOWBURNMAG who wrote some good threads for org.has passed away i heard with a heart problem,a good lad who also did his bit for charity too.

    R.I.P. mate


    alreet mate?

    Honestly, Bowburn?


    Gutted for the lads family!

    Deepest condolences.

  16. Clint, I just heard myself.

    Quite upsetting actually. I knew Steve fairly well in the early days of this ‘blog and we always had a laugh together.

    I don’t know if his family or friends will see this, but I offer my deepest condolences. He will be missed.

  17. CLINT aye mate sad, young fellow with young family,was a very rare heart problem,the lad knew his footy too did the great north run ect for charity a top guy.
    aye ime good and happy the toon are sitting 7th cannot understand some will be owr the moon if we finish there at seasons end

  18. Ice,

    good to hear you are fit mate.

    Thanx mate, for letting us know the craic, sad as it is.

    It’s really appreciated man.
    Do ya’ know when this happened?

    the Lads are doing alright, pity about satda like.
    Long way to gan yet.

    It’s deeply sad mate, can’t hardly believe it.
    His wife & bairns will be in bits.

    Same thing happened to a dear friend this time last year, heart issue that no one knew about, his Mrs. went to make a cuppa, came back, gone!

    36 years young!

    What can ya’ say?

  19. CLINT ive put this up from another site that richietoon put up to let the lads read what a good guy he was funny to the last and was hopeing
    seemed a difficult condition to work with. hope nobody thinks i’m insensitive for putting this up but Bowburn explains his condition and shows what a nice bloke he was.. I welled up reading it
    Fair to say the last couple of weeks has been unreservedly the longest and worst of my daft little life and the original help thread I sent out seems a lifetime ago. There’ll be time for pisstaking and I’ve managed a couple of times in the last week or so to get on read the banter, and it’s kept me going. I’m not going to claim I’m not cliched because I am. And I look to some of the lads on here as older brothers I never had and mates I’ve never met. They said it helps to express yourself and let it all out so here we go, I know most of you generally care. Part of the reason I haven’t tried to update is my brain has been fucked beyong belief with the drugs and sedatives I’ve been under so I’ve been misifiring like hell.
    Basically after being stabilised when I got admitted on the 31st, I ended up transferred to Glasgow to a specialist team. The diagnosis/prognosis was not right at the time but they’ve since discovered I had a rare, unique condition (less likely than Ashley spending money on NUFC) brought on rapidly by something as simple as the common cold, whereby the infection attacks your heart (giant cell myocarditis), and this results in heart failure. There’s literally no research data on this as they’ve single figure cases around the world, so I’m a working paper and they need work closely with some ‘leading world experts’ to help my recovery, even some the medical lads on here will struggle to fathom.
    In short, what they’ve done is install a pump in my heart so the bugger keeps ticking and they’re hopeful with mininmal data published I’m more ‘bridge to recovery, meaning they hope my heart can reover itself in time and I won’t need a transplant. Everything I do is fucking hard work, sitting up, it’s uncomfortable but I keep thinking I’ve had a second chance. The staff here at the hospital are so utterly in my debt I always feel wrong when I don’t end a sentence by saying ‘thanks for saving my life.’ There are literally no words to express my gratitude. I was telling my surgeon how I felt knackered after simple short walk and I was a bit tender “Well we cut you in half and sowed you back up so it’ll probably smart a bit”. The man is cool as fuck and my fucking hero.
    So the upshot is, I’m safe for now and on a very tough trip to recovery with lots of life changing things to deal with, but I’m alive and by fuck does it feel good. These lyrics played through my head when I felt myself on the way out and I realised I couldn’t leave my family behind just yet

  20. Appears, according to rumor, Tiote will be the next one on the helicopter heading south.
    With a rumored bidding war between Chewsea n’ Man.U. with figures of twenty to twenty five BIG ones being bandied aboot.
    Those are offers we know will not be refused and it’s been mentioned the club is already looking at his possible replacement, a fellow countryman has been mentioned in fact.
    Buy cheap, sell at a decent profit! younger cheaper and better!
    If offered the amounts mentioned, would you sell him ?
    Hell yeah !
    Get used to it .

  21. …& that the ‘rumors’ are actual & not just the usual regurgitated from last season with new no.s attached type.

  22. Well, this is pretty much what we all feared at the beginning of the season. The wheels coming off due to injury/thin squad. Hopefully we can right the ship quickly and at least Colo’s injury doesn’t turn out to be worse than expected. It will be good to have him back in the side.

    Gutted to hear about BowburnMag. He was one of the guys that came over from Ed’s blog, eh?

  23. Where i was stood was almost directly in line when tim grabbed the ball which was NEVER out.I turned to a bloke next to me as Norwich took the corner and said this is in.Obertan big disappointment again.If we dont get at least one CH back before the week-end cant see us beating Swansea Norwich just went through us thought 4-2 was fair enough.Good night out though as usual.

  24. I don’t blame Perch or Simpson for our defense-they took the responsibility manfully. They were, however, the chink in our armor and Norwich found it. I don’t think they did too bad on pure defending-BUT, you’ve got to win headers from FKs/corners and most importantly, they needed to be able to carry the ball out of our defense and find a pass. Which they didn’t. Again, not their fault-it’s our front office’s. That going into the season with 2 fit first-team CBs is a recipe for disaster was obvious to anyone with eyes to see such things.

    Pardew needs to have a moan at Llambias.