English Premiership

Newcastle draw, end losing streak

2015-05-09 18:21
John Carver (AP)

Newcastle - Ayoze Perez stopped the rot for Newcastle by scoring an equaliser in a 1-1 draw at home to West Bromwich Albion on Saturday.

The result ended Newcastle's run of eight straight defeats, their worst for 38 years, and left them two points above the Premier League relegation zone with two games of the season left.

It had seemed the north-east side were heading for another loss when Nigeria striker Victor Anichebe gave visitors West Brom a 32nd-minute lead at St James' Park.

But the Magpies were back on level terms through Perez four minutes before half-time and held on for what could yet be a precious point.

In Saturday's match programme, Newcastle captain Fabricio Coloccini insisted reports his side fought with one another on the bus following their 3-0 defeat at fellow strugglers Leicester last weekend were "not true at all".

Prior to Coloccini's comments, Magpies manager John Carver had said he was "the best coach in the Premier League", despite having presided over Newcastle's worst run of results since 1977.

For Saturday's match, Newcastle were without the suspended Mike Williamson -- whom Carver had accused of getting himself deliberately sent off against Leicester -- and Daryl Janmaat.

But Wales international Paul Dummett returned from a hamstring injury to the heart of Newcastle's defence alongside Coloccini.

West Brom almost went ahead early when Craig Dawson's header came back off the post, with the Newcastle defence blocking Youssouf Mulumbu's follow-up.

Newcastle then nearly took the lead in the 28th minute when Coloccini's header looped up to Moussa Sissoko who saw his initial effort blocked and his follow-up shot cleared off the line by Joleon Lescott.

Moments later, Newcastle were behind when poor set-piece defending left Anichebe free to head in Craig Gardner's free-kick into the box.

But Newcastle were level when the ball fell invitingly for Perez and the Spanish striker's half-volley beat Hull goalkeeper Boaz Myhill.

In the second half, Chris Brunt went close to scoring a winner for West Brom when, after his header was blocked by Dummett, and with goalkeeper Tim Krul on the ground, his volley from an awkward height off the ensuing rebound hit the post.

Tony Pulis's West Brom side might have been a man down nine minutes from time following a studs-up challenge by James Morrison on Newcastle's Ryan Taylor.

But the Scotland midfielder received a yellow card, rather than a red, from referee Chris Foy.

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