Monday, May 11, 2009

Schadenfreude Showdown: A Likely Liveblog

As far as the ass end of the table is concerned, today's Newcastle v. Boro match is the most important 90 minutes of the season for all three teams involved.

Three? Yes, if there is a winner today, Hull City could join the loser in the bottom three on goal difference. And we're probably going to liveblog it.

Getting a late jump here. I'll collect line-ups and return.

Newcastle: Harper, Beye, Steven Taylor, Bassong, Duff, Guthrie, Butt, Nolan, Gutierrez, Owen, Viduka. Subs: Krul, Coloccini, Martins, Ryan Taylor, Lovenkrands, LuaLua, Carroll.

Middlesbrough: Jones, Hoyte, Bates, Huth, Taylor, Downing, O’Neil, Shawky, Sanli, Emnes, Alves. Subs: Turnbull, Aliadiere, King, Arca, Adam Johnson, McMahon, Grounds.

I don't get the audio as the bar is running MSNBC on the speakers and there's a conversation about whether Rush Limbaugh is good for the Republican Party. Maybe I'll pick up a stream just for the audio. Although it won't be in sync. Argh... but wings are a $.25.

Okay, zebra flags flying. Can you feel the fear of failure. It is palpable.

Spectator, you'll be pulling for a Newcastle win, or a 'Boro win by 2 goals or more. I'll try to peek in on the playoffs every now and then and update the score there as well. That's Sheffield United and PNE. Currently scoreless in the 10th.

Teams are on the field and Alan Shearer is going all he can not to shit his pants.


1st minute: Owen with a couple of shots off target early. Well, one shot and another through ball he couldn't quite get to. This is going to be spotty as liveblogging from a bar is sub-optimal.

3rd minute: Boro. GOAL! Tuncay. Total fuck up on the back line by Newcastle. Holy shit. Harper totally fucked up. 1-0 Boro. Wow. Newcastle suicide hotline phones now jammed.

4th minute: Here's what the Magpies are up against. Newcastle have scored 1 goal since Shearer arrived. They now need at least two to avoid certain relegation.

5th minute: Newcastle hits the post. Viduka... arg. And the rebound is there for Taylor and he puts it over the bar. I'm slightly pulling for Newcastle by the way. Don't care much for Dr. Teeth.

8th minute: Newcastle with regular possession in the Boro third. Lobbing a throw-in to the box. They could probably use a Rory Delap as that had a hand time long enough to read some Tolstoy.

9th minute: Corner ofr Newcastle. GOAL! Taylor with the lethal header. 1-1. He came to the front of the 6 totally unmarked and just buried that sucker. Jesus, this is a scorefest. Nine minutes a goal a piece. Game on.

11th minute: Sorry, lost my audio stream. Nothing much has happened save maybe for a missed foul at the edge of the Boro box.

13th miunte: Yeah, my wings are here.

14th minte: Boro with some sustained possession in the midfield, but they can't get organized enough to advance. Newcastle intercept and play it back to the keeper.

15 minute: Pace has slowed. Viduka with a nice cross for Duff, that is cleared within about 10 feet of an own goal. Corner, goes long.

17th minute: This strange. Newcastle look confident. And they have an opponent on their heels.

19th minute: Guitierrez with a nice run through the midfield before he gets sandwiched and shit down. Magpies retreat to keep possesion.

20th minute: Consecutive corners for Newcastle. Second one forces the keeper to come of his line, but ball is punched out. Possession is 75-25 Magpies.

22nd minute: Some volleyball about the midfield stripe. Throw for Boro.

23rd minute: Downing on the wing feeds a good cross in that is cleared. Boro push forward and almost leave themselves open for a counter. Couldn't see who it was for Newcastle but they slipped. D'oh.

25th minute: Viduka with a smart little chip but it's too far for Owen to get to. Newcastle squander a break.

26th minute: Still zeroes with PNE and the Blades. Newcastle sends one long to nobody and it goes over the end line for a Boro goal kick.

27th minute: Viduka with a great cross to Owen who heads it just over the bar. And another chance with the ball falling in the box but Taylor can't get a foot to it. Corner.

28th minute: Outswinger comes to the endge of the box. There's nobody there to get a shot off and it gets cleared.

29th minute: Argh... as I'm looking for another audio feed Emnes misses two golden chances for Boro. The second he had a nearly empty net and pushed it just inches wide of the post. Boro should have taken a lead there.

31st minute: Boro on a great break and Nicky Butt takes a yellow for the team to stop it. Smart move. Boro playing much better here.

32nd minute: Stoppage for a downed Boro player. Can't see who, and lost my audio feed again. Ugh. Ooh... he wasn't even touched. Just took a funny step while backing up on a free kick and pulled up lame then fell down. Still looking for an identity.

35th minute: Sorry for the delay. Lunch and all.

36th minute: So it's Alves who got hurt. Not good for Boro. Marlon King comes on for him.

37th minute: Yellow for Boro. Huth. He totally held Owen who had a great look at a trhough ball before he was help up. Free kick goes long and off the back of Bassong. Why did he turn his body there? He might have had a shot at a good header? Goal kick Boro.

39th minute: End-to-end stuff here. Magpies with a free kick from about 30. It gets headed clear and they counter. They get numbers going up and have a great cross that gets headed up but not out. Newcastle defender turns back toward Harper (stupid) and almost gives it back to the defender from point blank range. Ends up giving a deep throw.

40th minute: Throw is cleared. Open play.

42nd minute: Duff with a nice cross to the back post but the header goes over the end line. Goal kick Boro.

43rd minute: I swear I am causing Boro to get great chances. Every time I try to refresh my audio stream they get a guy alone in on the keeper. It's uncanny. They had two more chances just then. Sorry missed the specifics. Just know that Boro aren't rolling over. Also know that Mark Viduka is fat and will have a heart attack on the pitch in the second half. Mark it seven, Dude.

45th minute: Emnes earns a free kick for Boro from about 30 out. No, make it 40.

+2 minute: Ooh, that was dangerously close to a handball in the box on Newcastle. Lucky there was no call. Whistle for the end of the half.


Okay, I've eaten and I think I have a "more" reliable audio feed. So hopefully this goes better in the second half. Anyway, Newcastle had the balance of possession in the opposition's third, but Boro had more clear cut 'shoulda' chances. Wow, except for the scoreline that sounds very reminiscent of yesterday. Anyway, the happiest people in England right now are in Hull (and Sunderland).

There is a really drunk couple at the bar playing the multi-touch. The girl has lovely sweater puppies. If I were drunk I think I'd ask if I could play multi-touch with her bewbs. Yes, I am shallow and inappropriate.

And we're back. Boro on the pitch. Waiting for Newcastle. Moments from re-start. 45 minutes as this is the last best chance for either team to pick up 3 points.


And we're off.

46th minute: Oh and a nice little backheel re-direct. Too far from goal and nobody was running through the box to do anything with it. Word on Alves is that he knackered his ankle.

47th minute: And Gutierrez earns a free kick right at the edge of the box, about 20 out. Duff and Butt line up over it.

49th minute: Deflected by the wall up and over for a corner. Corner whips in and someone from Boro tackles Bassong. Why isn't a penalty? There was a whistle but instead it's a re-kick on the corner.

50th minute: Oh... Owen gets a great feed about 30 out on the left side and makes a run into the box, then just pushes it wide of the far post. Great chance, good shot, just a little wide.

52nd minute: Gutierrez tries to get a foul but he took a dive. But then there is a whistle for something else. And Newcastle get a free kick anyway. And they promptly put it into the wall. Don't know what the whistle was for sorry. Aren't you just here for the dick jokes anyway?

53rd minute: Long ball for Emnes. Man, he's got some wheels. Why don't that put Aliadiere up top with him and run Newcastle off the park? Sanli with a nice shot from distance that goes just a touch over the bar. Nervy but not really dangerous.

55th minute: Guthrie and Viduka combine for a chance, but the ball ends up bouncing wide. Boro collect and head up field. Now they turn it over in the Newcastle third. And we're headed back the other way.

57th minute: Gary O'Neil with a rocket shot that forces a great save from Harper. Ooof. A bad turnover by Newcastle gave Boro great possessoin and they moved it well around the box until O'Neil unleashed a laser.

59th minute: Viduka and Owen almost hook up and now we're headed back the other way. Boro really getting some open space in the Magpies' third now. A couple of good crosses needed a better touch to get down. Newcastle better be careful.

60th minute: Huth is standing around looking hurt. Think he's yelling to Southgate that he's okay.

61st minute: Nolan with a "Eh, why not" from about 30 out. He turns blind and fires high and wide.

62nd minute: Huth with the stop and the ball rolls over the end line for a goal kick but the Boro defender walks away gingerly. Newcastle again trying to mount an attack. No, throw in for Boro in their third.

63rd minute: O'Neil with a great cross that whips in and Harper really struggles to bring down. But he does secure it. Now Tuncay... and he wastes it with a low shot from the top of the box that goes half way to the corner flag.

65th minute: N'castle change. .Gutierrez is coming off for Peter Lovenkrands.

66th minute: Man, this game has lost it's flow. And whoa.... that was close to a PK shout. Didn't see what happened but someone went down in the box. Maybe Nickey Butt. And now Lovenkrands with a good shot that is deflected wide for a corner.

67th minute: Cleared by Boro for another corner. And that one goes long. And as I suggested it looks like Aliadiere is warming up and about to come in for Boro.

68th minute: A change for each side is coming it looks like. Aliadiere on and Shawky off for Boro. Owen off and Martins on for Newcastle.

71st minute: GOAL! Martins. 2-1 Boro. What a first touch. A weird deflection comes back in the box, someone from Newcastle backheels it and Martin jumps on the ball makes one cut and beats the keeper to the far post with no doubt. Nice finish. 2-1.

72nd minute: Wow, and Aliadiere on his first touch off a feed from King puts a header just a bit wide. Viduka down and Bates down after he came from behind and plunked the Aussie on a header challenge.

73rd minute: On the replay it looks like Martins was even going down on that goal. Really quality finish. And we're restarting after the players get up.

75th minute: Newcastle still pushing forward. They want a third goal more than they want to go into a shell. Now a free kick after a foul on Lovenkrands. Butt puts it past the far post. Not a bad ball but there were no jailbirds to find the end of it.

76th minute: Change for Boro. Johnson on Taylor off.

77th minute: Boro playing patiently looking for a buid up. Oh, and Tuncay is there. He got through onside and he just needed a stronger touch but he plays it right into the keeper's hands. That was close.

79th minute: Boro is starting to press forward. They are maintaining possession bit they are obviously going to leave themselves exposed on the back. They have little choice.

80th minute: Corner for Boro. It swings in toward the back post and Harper pulls it down. Newcastle look more like they are trying to kill off the last 2 minutes than the last 10. They are knocking it up the pitch instead of keeping possession.

81st minute: Guthrie takes the a corner. It goes into the box and Viduka is there but he can't do anyhting with it. Ball goes out and comes back in. There is a bit of a scramble in front of goal but it is finally cleared out by Boro. Chance there for Newcastle.

83rd minute: This could use some Joey Barton to really liven it up, no? I give Shearer a perfect 10 for trying to look calm on that sideline shot. I'm nervous for him and I don't give much of a shit for either of these teams.

84th miunte: Counter from Newcastle and Viduka almost makes a great feed to Oba Martins but no dice. Ball is cleared... and I'm I'm typing I missed something for which Nolan was carded. Probably time wasting.

86th minute. Newcastle was hosed. Martins was taken down, but no whistle. Just a throw in the Boro third. Ohp, and there it is... GOAL 3-1 Newcastle.

87th minute: It's Lovenkrands. Wow... Shearer is going to look like a genius with his subs. Martins got the header to gain possesion and it was Lovenkrands on the end of a great cross from Nolan to beat the keeper. Really pretty and I can't beleive I'm saying that about Newcastle.

88th minute: And almost 4-1. Jones with a great save against a 3-on-1 counter by Newcastle.

89th minute: And Blogger is getting wonky. But the Geordies are going mad. It's the 90th and all they have to do is kill off stoppage time and they go clear of the drop zone on GD.

90th minute: Newcastle with another counter and another shot from the left side of the box is saved by Boro. They get back up field quickly. King off a cross into the box... and now a foul at the ednge, but it's going Newcastle's way.

+2 Almost there for Newcastle. They've got the ball and are killing time although not doing a good job of it.

+3 Now they are just huffing it up field and out. Shearer can't make time move fast enough.

+4 Goal kick by Harper... And there it is. FINAL! 3-1 Newcastle and they get clear of relegation for now.

Newcastle were easily the better side although Boro were not without chances. So there are two weeks left but for Alan Shearer at least there is a reprieve for the moment. And for Dr. Teeth, well he can start making plans for the Colaship.

That was kind of exciting stuff, thanks for playing along guys.


Mike Georger said...

Can't decide between this game and the playoff. One should be a good, tense, game, the other should be accompanied by Benny Hill music.

JT said...

Shearer finally realized that starting Nolan, Guthrie and Gutierrez was a smart thing to do. But is it too late?

Spectator said...

I'm rooting for whatever result leads to Phil Brown taking his fake-tanned face back down to the Colaship.

The NY Kid said...

those Sheffield twats can sod off - I'm for Preston North End.

and half-heartedly for Newcastle, because I like saying "Obafemi Martins"

Spectator said...

First game was 1-1... No away goal rule in the Colaship playoffs, right?

Teeknuts said...

If the first game was anything to go by, Sheffield should go through. They could have had 3 or 4 by my memory in the first leg.

JT said...

Correct, Spec. No away goals in this stuff

Mike Georger said...

Nice build up for Sheffiled, some cunt named Montgomery wastes a solid three minutes of passing.

Mike Georger said...

And I like Preston's jerseys better, so go PNE!

Teeknuts said...

Newcastle get the Price is Right fail horn.

The NY Kid said...

seriously. 3 minutes? I saw better defending this weekend during a U-8 tourney.

/never mind why I was watching children

Keith said...

Kid, we know why. You were scouting for Wenger. It's OK to admit it.

Spectator said...

This is going to be spotty as liveblogging from a bar is sub-optimal.Hot wing sauce on the keyboard!

Mike Georger said...

Preston's keeper is sniffing smelling salts during play and the doctor is still behind the net, this will end in tears. Hilarious tears.

Mike Georger said...

Wow. ESPN couldn't see fit to have an actual person do the gamecast for the relegation battle. Dedication to the sport!

Teeknuts said...

I'll say this much for Newcastle, Alan Shearer looks damn good in a suit.

The NY Kid said...

eh, he's no Pep Guardiola.

Mike Georger said...

Viduka, crap.

Teeknuts said...

True, but he also doesn't wear weird leather ties.

Mike Georger said...

Liverpool should have kept Guthrie so they would have someone in the organization that can take a competent corner.

Mike Georger said...


Mike Georger said...

A black guy with number 15, a shitty beard, and a jew fro? How is that guy not Jermaine Pennant?

Mike Georger said...

Appears to be a five year old child on the 'brough bench for some reason.

The NY Kid said...

that's just Aliadiere

Sarah said...

Just woke up from a nap; I had no idea this game was on. Okay, come on Newcastle! I'm all about the Geordies today.

...Okay, yes it's only because the new Maxïmo Park album just came out. But still.

The Fan's Attic said...

@Sarah: you have a footie blog that can only be read by invited people? that doesn't seem like much fun.

Sarah said...

TFA: it's not actually up and running yet. It will be public sooner or later, once everyone's done with exams and can actually take the time to write stuff!

The Fan's Attic said...

you shouldn't have told us, left it a mystery, we would have all thought it was something new and awesome that we didn't know about.

The Fan's Attic said...

i'm sure it will be awesome, but now the mystery is gone. For now.

Teeknuts said...

It seems like only a matter of time before Sheffield scores.

Kopper said...

OK, as a Norwich fan who wants the Colaship to be as tough as possible next year (so Ipswich don't get promotoed) who do you think I should be rooting for, in both cases?

I think I want a draw, so Hull stays up and both Boro and Newcastle go down, and I want PNE to be promoted so Reading stay in Colaship as well. What do you guys think?

Precious Roy said...

Want Newcastle up. Want Phil Brown to go down.

Don't care much who wins the Colaship playoff although I'd be cool with PNE.

Teeknuts said...

I want Burnley to go up, only so that there's three teams with the exact same shirt design in the EPL.

Teeknuts said...

Sheffield finally get a goal. I can't believe it took them so long.

Spectator said...

Hehehe..... "Sweater puppies."

Mosher said...

I'm on 100Mb broadband in the UK, listening to 5Live's Toon coverage via the "low bandwidth" option - and *my* audio feed keeps dropping.


Still, we scored for the first time in 288 mins, which helps.

EbullientFatalist said...

Between yesterday's Hayek pic and today's discussion of "sweater puppies", UF has become my new home for . . . well, nevermind.

I'm "pulling" for PNE to go up, and for NUFC, 'Boro, and Hull to go down. WBA, ftw!

Mike Georger said...

I just turned down a free ticket to the Penguins game tonight because I didn't feel like driving three hours. And I wanted to see the end of this game. I suck at life.

Teeknuts said...

Now Preston should have scored, exciting stuff.

EbullientFatalist said...

That's a fail, Georger.

Keith said...

Andrew, I've got the same rooting interest for the relegation teams. Most importantly because that means the Villa will have three derby opponents. And Villa always do well in derbies. It'd be like a guaranteed 14-18 points

EbullientFatalist said...

Keith: I've never seen PNE in the Prem, so this would be new for me. I don't mind Hull, but they haven't show anything since December, and WBA keeps playing their attacking game, which I respect.

The Fan's Attic said...

somebody fucking do something in this bloody fucking match. this is riduculous. maybe we can just relegate 4 teams this year.

Sarah said...

Oh man I would kill to be at that game tonight. Would be nice not to have to stay up until 3 am to watch it on a crappy internet feed.

Mike Georger said...

I would've had to rush to even get there by the start, more likely I'd miss most of the first period. Plus I wouldn't be able to drink because I'd have to turn around and drive back, just a huge pain in the ass. The drive from here to Pittsburgh is an exercise in traffic and construction.

Mike Georger said...

Neil Mellor? Good lord!

EbullientFatalist said...

Owen off in the 69th for a side battling against relegation. England's Last Best Hope, my ass.

EbullientFatalist said...


What a super-sub.

Mike Georger said...

Gayest keeper jersey in the game, Newcastle United!

Mike Georger said...


The Fan's Attic said...

there we go.

Spectator said...

Now Toon just need to hold on for the next 15-odd minutes!

Teeknuts said...

Preston did just about all they could at the end, but couldn't get one in the net. Sheffield are through.

The Fan's Attic said...

Toon has scored 3 goals today (including the own goal), which equals the same amount they scored in the past 7 matches.

Teeknuts said...

Defending like that is why Boro are going down.

EbullientFatalist said...

Why is it that everyone in Newcastle is fat and/or bald and/or requiring eyeglasses? This includes the women.

Keith said...

Andrew- PNE's got nothing to do with it. I'm just rooting for the Baggies to stay up, basically. Our derby foes are Wolves, Baggies, and the Bluenoses. PNE is right by Blackburn (it would be kinda nice to see Blackburn have a derby opponent, I guess)

Mike Georger said...

I still think Newcastle might be fucked. Fulham are light years better than them, and Villa .... well idk what the fuck is going to happen there, but still. Hull have Bolton, then most likely a game in which United will already have wrapped up the title and will field nothing but reserves because of the final.

Mike Georger said...

"Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger insists that his team's shortcomings will not be solved just by spending money"


Keith said...

Georger, I do not like your uncertainty, mainly because I'll be at Villa Park for that match.

That said, whatever happens, I sure as hell hope it happens with Gareth Barry in the stands. His time is done. See ya.

Mike Georger said...

So Gareth Barry dies at Keith's hands in a fortnight. You're all witnesses!

Keith said...

I meant his time at Villa Park (except for regularly scheduled annual visits)


Mike Georger said...

Oh no, I understood that. I just think you're gonna kill him.

jjf3 said...

Thanks, PR, you made my afternoon a little better by doing this.

And if Burnley come up, Rovers will have their arch-rivals, and a serious derby, in the EPL next year...and I'll get to add them to the two teams I currently hate irrationally, as its hard to truly hate a team yours hasn't played during your fandom...

Precious Roy said...

jjf3: My pleasure.