English Premiership

Magpies, Pompey in stalemate

2009-04-28 07:11
Newcastle boss Alan Shearer (Gallo Images)
Newcastle - Newcastle's chances of clinging on to their place in the English Premiership suffered a serious setback as Alan Shearer's side were frustrated by a resilient Portsmouth.   

A goalless draw left the Magpies three points adrift of fourth-from-bottom Hull with just four matches left to stave off relegation and a daunting trip to face title-chasing Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday.

The point edges Portsmouth closer to securing their own top flight status with Paul Hart's side now seven points clear of the drop zone.

The stakes involved in a match that Shearer had described as both a must-win encounter and the most important of his players' careers, were reflected in the presence of all three of the club's leading strikers - Michael Owen, Mark Viduka and Obafemi Martins - in the starting line-up.

That helped to ensure a buzzing atmosphere at the outset but the final whistle was to be greeted with a chorus of jeers from the home fans as Newcastle's big guns failed to produce the moment of quality required, with Owen squandering a glorious chance just after the hour mark.

Portsmouth had to weather some early pressure but once they began to hit their hosts on the counter-attack they started to look dangerous, although Newcastle came closest to breaking the deadlock before the interval when David James did well to turn a Damien Duff strike around the post. From the resulting corner, Viduka sent a looping header over the bar and the home side also had claims for a penalty for handball against Hermann Hreidarsson waved away after Alan Smith had blasted a shot against the Icelander's arm.

Five minutes into the second half, there was a real let-off for Newcastle when Peter Crouch went to ground in the box under a challenge from Fabricio Coloccini. That was a sign that Newcastle were starting to leave space at the back for Pompey to exploit but the home side should have taken the lead just after the hour mark when Viduka, despite having been wrestled to the ground, played Owen into a one-on-one situation with James.

The England goalkeeper came out on top in the duel with his international team-mate, saving with his legs, and that was to prove Newcastle's last real chance of claiming all three points.

It could have been worse for Shearer's men with Portsmouth also guilty of wasting opportunities to clinch victory. With 11 minutes left, Crouch fired straight at Steve Harper and, three minutes later, Scotland midfielder Richard Hughes headed against the foot of the post.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

16 April 2014
Manchester City v Sunderland, Etihad Stadium 20:45
Everton v Crystal Palace, Goodison Park 20:45
19 April 2014
Tottenham Hotspur v Fulham, White Hart Lane 13:45
West Ham United v Crystal Palace, Boleyn Ground 16:00
Cardiff City v Stoke City, Cardiff City Stadium 16:00
Newcastle United v Swansea City, St. James' Park 16:00
Aston Villa v Southampton, Villa Park 16:00
Chelsea v Sunderland, Stamford Bridge 18:30
20 April 2014
Norwich City v Liverpool, Carrow Road 13:00
Hull City v Arsenal, The KC Stadium 15:05
Everton v Manchester United, Goodison Park 17:10
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Which team do you think will win the English Premiership?

English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Featured Blog

The stock of Bulls and Sharks 2014 Super Rugby jerseys are slowly becoming available after the festive season break, writes blogger Baylion.

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.