My Word! Newcastle United 1, Queens Park Rangers 0.

Posted on January 15th, 2012 | 27 Comments |

Ray Wilkins
Butch Wilkins: My Word!
Venue: St James’ Park, Toon.
Date: Sun 15th Jan 2011.
Kick-Off: 1:30 pm.
Referee: Chris Foy.

United came to this game on the back of 2 excellent straight wins against Man Utd 3-0 (got that one in early today!) and Blackburn 2-1 in the FA Cup. In contrast, Queens Park Rangers had taken only one point from their last 6 games.

Everything pointed to a fairly routine, comfortable home win. However this was the first league game without Demba Ba and Cheick Tiote, and the other potentially influencing factor was the appointment of Mark Hughes, who took charge of QPR for his first game following the sacking of Neil Warnock.

The match referee, Chris Foy, was the man who had sent off Man City’s Captain Kompany the previous week for that 2-footed challenge about which there has been much subsequent debate.

United Manager Alan Pardew was asked by Sky TV before the game about Ba and how he would deal with losing such a prolific goalscorer. He replied that it was about the team, not individuals and that Best and Ameobi would be a handful.

The day got off to an annoying start for those watching on Sky as they insisted on calling St James’ Park the “Sports Direct Arena” for some inexplicable reason. You’d think they would have asked somebody what the proper name was if they didn’t know?

QPR kicked off towards the Gallowgate end with Helguson getting an early shot on goal which was never going to beat Krul. Almost immediately, Rangers then had another chance following a mistake by Santon and Krul had to make another save.

QPR were playing well in the first part of the game and this was assisted by United, who were clearly under instructions to play the long ball to the two big forwards up front. Unfortunately the long balls we played invariably found a QPR player and just led to them coming back again. After ten minutes, Sky reported with glee that QPR had so far had 5 attacks to United’s 0. Ex-QPR player, manager and Uncle Fester lookalike – Co-commentator Ray “my word” Wilkins was positively having an orgasm.

In contrast to the way we normally start games with energy, it was about 11 minutes into the game before United settled down and started to keep the ball and exert some influence. However QPR came at us again and Sean Wright-Phillips hit the bar on 16 mins after some sloppy play by the United defence.

On 19 minutes, Shaun Derry was yellow-carded for a bad tackle on Yohan Cabaye – who needed to be stretchered off. Cabaye was not a happy bunny about the tackle and made his feelings known to anyone within earshot as he sat on the pitch waiting for the stretcher. Hatem Ben Arfa came on to replace him. Whilst all this was going on, “my word” Wilkins was having a right whinge about Cabaye and saying he should get up and get on with the game! He then had a whinge about how long it took HBA to get ready to come on – impartial commentating at it’s best…NOT! Is it just me, or is watching Shaun Derry like watching Vinnie Jones?

On 26 minutes Guttierez got his head onto the end of a Ryan Taylor free kick which followed a foul on Ameobi, but he couldn’t get the header on target. On 30 minutes we heard the first actual “my word” from Wilkins as Bothroyd fired a shot past Krul’s left post. Clint Hill was then shown a yellow card for a tackle on Danny Simpson on the popular side.

One shot on target, one goal!

After a couple of failed attacks first by Taylor and then Ben Arfa, a miracle occurred and Newcastle United finally took the lead after 36 minutes, with their first shot on target in the entire game. It came through Leon Best out of not much really and was a good one though. He got the ball in the area with his back to goal, cleverly turned and after a couple of touches hit the ball nicely into the bottom right-hand corner.

Shortly after that, on 38 minutes, Bothroyd was yellow carded for a crude tackle on Santon. The crowd had been very quiet up to this point, but burst into “you’re getting sacked in the morning” which I thought was a bit premature considering it was Mark Hughes’s first game in charge!

Half-time arrived after an extra 4 minutes had been played due to the Cabaye kerfuffle, and those watching on Sky TV were treated to Jamie Redknapp waxing lyrical about Besty’s goal “if that had been Thierry Henry, they’d be talking about it for years to come”. Nice lad, Jamie, nowt like his dad and he doesn’t have the family twitch yet.

Second Half

United kicked off the second half and Wilkins’ first “my word” of the half came after only 13 seconds this time. In the 50th minute, Bothroyd had a free shot in the area with his right foot but put it well over. He’s left-footed apparently according to Wilkins. Bothroyd had another shot with his left shortly after and Krul saved it. My word!

The next “my word” came on 53 minutes when Wilkins didn’t like where QPR had placed the ball for a corner (it was behind the line and therefore technically off the pitch). The Magpies had pretty much ditched the long ball game in this half and were playing the passing game that we are much better at. The Sky people were disappointed that we were on top as today was clearly supposed to be about Mark Hughes and his first game for London giants, QPR.

In the 61st minute QPR got away with a handball in the area, and it was so blatant even Sky reluctantly agreed. After 64 minutes Helguson trotted off to be replaced by Gary Neville look-a-like Tommy Smith. Paddy Kenny was involved in a bizarre incident when he ran out to the touchline to put the ball out. United took the throw in quickly and Gutierrez curled an on-target shot towards goal, but the QPR defence had scampered back to cover.

After 75 minutes Buzsacky was hauled off to be replaced by Man United’s Macheda. Of course we’re not afraid of Man Utd players since we dismantled them 3-0 on Wednesday 4th January – oh…have I mentioned that before? Perch also replaced Best as Pardew clearly decided QPR’s attack was powder-puff and we’d just shut up shop, park the bus and see the game out. This tactic was further confirmed after 81 minutes when Ryan Taylor was replaced by Dan Gosling. By this stage “my word” Wilkins had decided “Sean” (Wright-Phillips) was a “wonderful player”. I wish I had a fiver for each time he mentioned the lad and talked him up!

After 79 minutes Sky tried to balance things up by pointing out that United had only had the ball on target once and had scored, whereas QPR had 13 attempts on target but hadn’t scored. They forgot to mention the bit about “goals win games”.

United were passing the ball around neatly now and Macheda showed his frustration when he was booked for a tackle on Guthrie. Wilkins tried one final roll of the dice by doing the “commentator’s curse” thing – praising how solid United looked. It didn’t work. Shortly before the end, it was announced that Danny Guthrie won the Barclays Man of the Match.

Overall, not the most exciting or glamorous game for the spectator’s, the TV audience or even for Ray Wilkins. But good teams grind out results – and that’s what we did today. 3 points from this game saw us leap-frog Liverpool and move onto the same points as Arsenal. Should be fun again when they start having those “lets look at the top of the Premiership” discussions, because “Invisible United” are back in 6th place! Wonder if we’ll get a mention?

Teams and stats

Newcastle United (4-4-2): Tim Krul (G), Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini, Davide Santon, Ryan Taylor (Dan Gosling 81), Danny Guthrie, Yohan Cabaye (Hatem Ben Arfa 25), Jonas Gutierrez, Shola Ameobi, Leon Best (James Perch 77).

Subs: Rob Elliot, Shane Ferguson, James Perch, Dan Gosling, Mehdi Abeid, Gabriel Obertan, Hatem Ben Arfa.

Queens Park Rangers (4-4-2): Paddy Kenny (G), Luke Young, Danny Gabbidon, Anton Ferdinand, Clint Hill, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Shaun Derry, Akos Buzsaky (Fred Macheda 76), Jamie Mackie; Heidar Helguson (Tommy Smith 65), Jay Bothroyd

Subs: Radek Cerny, Bradley Orr, Fitz Hall, Hogan Ephraim, Tommy Smith, DJ Campbell, Federico Macheda.

Goals: Leon Best (37).

Yellow cards: Shaun Derry (20), Clint Hill (32), Jay Bothroyd (39), Fred Macheda (89).

Red cards: None.

Possession: Newcastle United 60.9%, QPR 39.1%.

Post match interviews

Alan Pardew

Mark Hughes

NUFCBlog Author: UTD111 UTD111 has written 59 articles on this blog.

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27 Responses

  1. Swanselona indeed Worky. They are a wonder to watch, and they have just come up from the championship too. We should take a leaf out of their book.

  2. UTD111, as you seem so keen on using Bobby Robson quotes for your bio bit how about:

    “When Gazza was dribbling, he used to go through a minefield with his arm, a bit like you go through a supermarket?”

  3. And lo the ‘top 6’ doth become the ‘top 7’ in order to continue to accommodate Liverpool

  4. Another good match report Mick – Wilkins has got to be the most one sided commentator ever. It started out funny – but it was disgraceful when cabaye went off. I would happily have dragged him out the commentary box and chucked him down the stairs. He really is an arse!

  5. High points of the game for myself; Best SCORING again and Benny playing MOST of the match in which he had a massive effect :-)

  6. Excellent work there, my word, and Faustion Asprilla, I couldn’t agree more – maybe I just live a little too close to the land of the scousers and have to hear them bleating on repeatedly about “being one of the world’s big clubs” as Stevie G recently claimed – prat. I hope they finish below Everton every season!

  7. Mothboy says:
    January 15, 2012 at 7:33 pm

    “maybe I just live a little too close to the land of the scousers and have to hear them bleating on repeatedly about “being one of the world’s big clubs” as Stevie G recently claimed – prat.”

    The thing is though that they are “one of the world’s big clubs” thanks to a gadgie from Hetton-le-Hole called Bob Paisley.

    They’ve won five European Cups, three UEFA cups and three Super Cups and we’ve won one Inter City Fairs Cup.

  8. Good games from a couple today I think. Coloccini looked good (When has he not this season!) Mike Williamson and Santon looked sound too.

    I think we had a few duff games as well though. Raylor’s set piece delivery was generally pretty good, but I wasn’t too sure by his open play, along with Guthrie I felt we had far too many wasted long balls and those two seemed to be the worst culprits a lot of the time.

    Also, I have to agree that Ray Wilkins really was beyond a joke today. What a complete tw@ that bloke is. How many times did he say “It’s a free kick, get up, end of” during that match? It was driving me mental!! Especially, as Tattyheed mentioned @5, when talking about Cabaye. He went surprisingly quiet when Cabaye never came back on, subbed, and obviously not just putting it on like he’d sais so many times!

    However one time that I did agree with him (Even though I didn’t want to) was when he was talking about Ben Arfa. Now I know I’ll incur some wrath here, and note I’m saying right now that I know all too well that he’s our best (maybe only) flair player, probably our most skillful player, he’s tricky and mercurial and all the rest of it, but too often he gives the ball away far too cheaply. He wants to keep hold of it too long all the time and just tries to do too much too often. He’s as frustrating as hell to watch at times because he ALWAYS wants to beat one extra man, he ALWAYS has to go for the killer pass, and yeah, it’s great when it comes off, but the success rate of it’s just not high enough for me personally. There are too many times when there’s a better passing option and he just doesn’t want to know. The most intricate, clever pass is not necessarily always the best one, and I’d like to see him work on that a bit myself.

    That said, I’d still like to see him play a bigger part in games, particularly playing slightly withdrawn from Ba if possible.

    Hopefully Cabaye isn’t too bad, cos I’d hate to lose him, even for a single match as I think he’s been brilliant for us so far.

    As for the result, well 3 points is 3 points isn’t it? We certainly didn’t play too well today at all, and as far as chance creation goes, we were downright awful. But, as I always say, it’s not about how many chances you make, it’s about how many chances you take, and we edged QPR there, and that’s ultimately what counts! :)

  9. Very good post young man. We need to complain to Sky about that unctious tosser Chamberlin and his groung name dropping.

  10. Wonder how long liverpool can stop outside the top 4 before they get into serious financial problems.

  11. clinath says:
    January 15, 2012 at 8:11 pm
    “Wonder how long liverpool can stop outside the top 4 before they get into serious financial problems”

    Yes – they seriously need to get some cash in. Carroll to Newcastle United for £5M plus Nile Ranger is business they should look to do….. ;)

  12. Great stuff by swansea today….good match and good football….fookin hate arsenal so I rooted for the Swans.

    Was sidetracked during our match did we have 1 shot in 90 mins or did I miss some?
    Dire football anyway.

  13. We had a few shots SJT…

    It was the “on target” bit that we’d best not focus on LOL!

    Aye – good performance by Swansea – who were they playin again?? ;)

  14. I was only distracted twice briefly thought I might of missed something…haha.
    Not the most creative performance.

  15. And what was Jamie Redknapp on about before kick off when he said Guthrie will fit right into the Tiote role because he’s exactly the same sort of player?

    Come on Jamie mate, if you’re that ignorant about the players you’re talking about, best to just say nowt eh?

    What’s his next claim? Tim Krul is our top scorer? Messi has always dreamed of playing for the toon? Joey Barton is just misunderstood?

  16. That’ll do!

    Win ugly, clean sheet, spoil clogger hughes little party.


    Howay the Lads!

  17. win without our two “best players ” and then the brilliant cabaye goes off after being clogged and we keep a clean sheet !!!!! kiss my ar$e wilkins you prick,3 points nearer survival ,and survival in this league is what counts

  18. some of us were looking for a load of goals today – had we won 4-0 we would be 5th above arsenal on GD (just another if).
    Did you notice the poorly erased “Sports” in the centre circle? what was he up to there?

  19. CLiNT FLiCK says:
    January 15, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    “That’ll do!

    Win ugly, clean sheet, spoil clogger hughes little party.


    Will it Clint? How about winning beautifully and having a bit of respect for the opposition? ;-)

  20. Match highlights are now up and I’ve moved the post match interviews into that post too.

    Supermac, on the centre circle – were you at the game? I could only see a very faint trace of something on the screen of my laptop.

  21. worky,
    i’ve got nowt against qpr, it’s clogger hughes, nasty piece of work as a player & that’s how he sets his teams up as a manager.

    So, respect where & when it’s due.

    If we can win, beautiful/ugly/however, with some of our team out, i’m well happy with that.
    We won nowt when we played beautiful football, so grinding out results is fine by me in this instance. I’m sure manusa fans haven’t minded winning leagues doing it?