Super Shola saves Christmas!

By Lee Ryder on Dec 22, 12 09:12 PM

As the clocks ticked down at St James' Park, it looked like Newcastle United fans would be heading home for Christmas feeling down in the dumps as Queens Park Rangers threatened to frustrate them on their visit to Tyneside.

And the boos that erupted when Papiss Cisse was withdrawn just after the hour mark could have easily been a warm-up for worse to come with the game deadlocked against a side that can only be described as relegation fodder.

However, Shola Ameobi had other ideas.

Now Ameobi may well split the opinions of the Toon Army.

And he may lack the Box Office appeal of a Hatem Ben Arfa or Yohan Cabaye in the eyes of many.

Yet nobody was complaining when he powered his way into the box with nine minutes left and netted a finish that could be worth so much in the next few weeks.

Make no doubt about it, without Shola's contribution late on picking up just a draw against QPR in what was arguably a relegation six pointer could have been the start of a downward spiral.

True, it doesn't get any easier with trips to Man United and Arsenal.

But there is breathing space again for the Magpies as they registred a much needed victory over the Rs.

Compared to last season this term has been far from the party experience of the 2011/12 campaign.

Thanks to Shola though, at least Geordie fans can enjoy their Christmas dinner on the back of a win.

And as Ameobi made a point to wish Newcastle supporters a happy Christmas after his post-match interviews, the long serving striker - who has seen it all at St James' Park from Champions League to Championship - simply quipped: "I hope their Christmas pudding tastes that little bit sweeter now."


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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