Sunderland 2 Newcastle 1

By Lee Ryder on Oct 25, 08 03:13 PM

NEWCASTLE United were beaten on Wearside today for the first time since 1980 as rival fans battled on the pitch at the end of Sunderland's 2-1 win at the Stadium of Light.

Police struggled to separate supporters at the final whistle as Roy Keane guided his side to his first derby victory on a dark, dark day for the Geordie nation.

The two sides entered the arena to deafening noise with plenty of hostility and hatred hurled United's way by the partisan red and white home crowd.

On a perfect playing surface a swirling wind added to the tense conditions while Sunderland fans unveiled a banner reading "Mike Ashley is a fat Mackem hero" as both teams huddled before kick off.

United stuck with the same team that started against Manchester City with Habib Beye free from the shackles of suspension after his red card from Monday night was overturned by the FA.

Joey Barton was named on the bench having completed his six-match ban.

Sunderland keeper Craig Gordon was out with an ankle injury meaning Hungarian stopper Marton Fulop was between the sticks.

With waste paper and rubbish flying round the pitch the game predictably started in scrappy fashion - nobody could get control of the ball.

The first foul of the game arrived on five minutes when Guthrie wiped out Dean Whitehead with a crunching tackle.

On eight minutes Anton Ferdinand fouled Ameobi to earn United a free-kick but Geremi blazed it high over the bar from 30-yards.

Oba Martins then won a free-kick 10 yards closer as Dwight Yorke tripped the Nigerian on 12 minutes.

This time though Geremi's set-piece went straight into the wall.

Djibril Cisse responded with 18 minutes on the clock but his powerful right-footed effort flashed wide of the upright.

But a minute later the Stadium of Light erupted as Cisse opened the scores as Steed Malbranque was allowed to run at the United defence after losing his marker, his cross flashed past Given before the former Liverpool man stabbed home to make it 1-0.

Two minutes later Ameobi belted an effort at Fulop but it went inches over the bar.

With 25 minutes gone Nicky Butt indicated that he was struggling with an ankle problem with Barton instructed to warm up.

Ameobi won a free-kick near the penalty area on the half hour mark and it paid dividends after Pascal Chimbonda had dragged him back.

An inch perfect cross landed on the head of Shola who had leapt high to send a bullet header beyond Fulop to level the scores.

United were forced to soldier on with 10 men as Butt left the field for treatment but he returned with 12 minutes of the half remaining.

But the two teams went in all square at the break.

Sunderland were handed a great chance two minutes in after a Steven Taylor handball on the edge of the box but Cisse smashed the ball wides.

On 52 minutes Martins controlled yet another awkward bouncing ball before trying an audacious effort from long range but it went just over the top.

Martins then rolled the ball to Butt three minutes before the hour mark but the skipper's shot went just over.

Moments later Kenwyne Jones replaced veteran Yorke to make his first appearance of the season.

Ameobi could have put Newcastle ahead on the hour though when Martins put him in the clear but after beating his man he scooped it high over the ball.

Tempers flared a minute later as Barton was bombarded with missiles as he tried to warm up.

Police told Barton to warm up in the technical area as the game continued.

With 63 minutes gone Cisse forced a great save from Given with the Irishman keeping the ball out with his feet.

Kinnear unleashed Argentine winger Jonas with the player making his first appearance since August in a black and white shirt when he replaced Geremi.

Butt made a dangerous tackle on Diouf on 73 minutes for which he picked up a yellow card and earned Sunderland a free-kick right on the edge of the box.

And it allowed Sunderland to snatch the lead again when Kieran Richardson curled home the set-piece high over Given for 2-1.

Sunderland could have extended their lead through Cisse twice before United made a double change with seven minutes left.

And he could not have come closer when an effort smacked off the bottom of the post late in the game.

Barton - predictably booed - and Jose Enrique were thrown into the action straight as Big Joe made his last throw of the dice.

SUNDERLAND: Fulop, McCartney, Whitehead, Malbranque (Tainio 87), Cisse, Richardson, Diouf (Reid 90), Collins, Yorke (Jones 58), Chimbonda, Ferdinand.

UNITED: Given, Beye, Coloccini, Taylor, Bassong (Enrique 84), Geremi, Butt (Barton 84), Guthrie, Duff, Martins, Ameobi.

Crowd: 47,936


Kisuke said:

I hope the morale of our players aren't too badly affected by this defeat. I hope they can show some fighting spirit and take all 3 points in our next game. No more excuses.

James said:

What can i say, i'm gutted. why did we not play like the last 10 mins for the rest of the game. i was also dissapointed with the reaction of the mackems towards Joey Barton. Yes i knew he would get alot of stick and rightly so but to have people get on the pitch to have a go at him and have coins thrown at him was a discrace. I hope that the people involved are dealt with appropiatley and banned from football grounds around the country as anyone else involved with any other player would be.

bob harvey said:

I wasn't at the game, but I don't think Newcastle would have lost if Gutierrez and Barton had played for 45 minutes. We could have done with another 20 minutes.
Presumably there will have to be sanctions for two pitch invasions and the throwing of missiles.

Tad Caster said:

Wellllllllllll, I was wrong about that one. Sunderland acually played, particularly when they had a reasonably speedy midfielder playing through the middle - while ours were on the bench! We actually finished with a better team than we put out. Nobody was particularly good for us, but we can't persist with the clumsy midfield pairing of Butt and Guthrie. They give the ball away; they give freekicks away. I thouight Martins and Shola were disappointing too. Nowehere near sharp enough.

I'm afraid the great unwashed deserved this one. Let's hope the club gets done for the behaviour of its fans, however.

HenryA said:

Completely agree with Tad Caster here, Butt has been our biggest offender at giving the ball away cheaply and the pairing of him and Guthrie is always going to attract free kicks.
Duff was back to his usual headless chicken routine and should have been replaced by Zoggy. Barton looked good and sharp when he came on and even looked more creative than I remembered him to be.
Its a bummer to lose to that lot but its reassuring to reflect that I can't remember what it felt like last time!
I would urge Joe to keep going with Oba and Shola even when MO is back, lets just get offensive!
Somebody will get a beating soon I have no doubt.
Howay the Toon.

raich 37 said:

James I hope you are including Joe Barton in your banning order.............


Lee Ryder

Lee Ryder - Proudly born and bred on Tyneside, the Chronicle's chief sports writer has followed the fortunes of the club over the last three decades as a Toon fan and football writer.

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