Premier League Newcastle 2 v 2 Tottenham
Newcastle twice came from behind in this action-packed Premier League encounter at St James’ Park, to preserve their unbeaten record in the top flight.
Harry Redknapp reckons his side could’ve beaten Newcastle if only they’d taken their chances in the 2-2 draw.
Rafael van der Vaart opened the scoring from the penalty spot before Demba Ba equalised. Jermain Defoe came off the bench to restore the Londoners’ lead but a late Shola Ameobi strike sealed a draw.
In what was a poor first half with the game lacking any clear-cut opportunities early on, both sides where cancelling each other out. Newcastle’s biggest threat was coming via the set pieces of Ryan Taylor, with the presence of Best and Ba a constant threat.
Just before the half-hour mark, Spurs captain Ledley King’s participation in the game was over, as the Tottenham defender pulled up holding his groin.
It was on 40 mins when Adeybayor surged into the Newcastle penalty area and was tripped by Steven Taylor, after a moments hesitation referee Probart pointed to the penalty spot with Taylor lucky not to pick up a yellow card. Rafael van der Vaart stepped up to take the penalty, sending Tim Krul the wrong way to give Spurs the lead.
The Magpies needed only three minutes to get themselves back into the game after the break, Gutierrez skipped past Modric and then full-back Kyle Walker on the left before crossing for the unmarked Ba to slide in and send the ball towards goal, where Friedel could only parry it into his own net.
Spurs replaced Van der Vaart with Defoe and the substitute wasted no time in making his mark, turning smartly before thumping a left-footed shot into the bottom corner, but the home side finished the stronger and Ameobi snatched a point with his drilled 86th-minute strike.
The draw stretches the Geordie sides unbeaten run to ten games and keeps them fourth in the Premier League.
“I think we have shown we will give the top teams a tough test as well as everyone else in the division,” said Alan Pardew. “We know it is going to be tough for us to maintain it, we are going to need some good luck with injuries and suspensions, but it has been a fantastic start.”
“At 2-1, away from home with 20 minutes left, you should hold on to win the game,” said Redknapp,
“I wasn’t happy with the way we played in the first half and we looked a little bit tired. I suppose it was a good substitution, but if I was that clever I would have started with Jermain and we might have won the game.