Newcastle's lack cutting edge in goalless draw

12 February 2011 05:25
NEWCASTLE'S lack of attacking firepower proved costly as they were held to a goalless draw at Blackburn Rovers.[LNB] Despite dominating the majority of the game, the Magpies, who sold Andy Carroll for £35m in the transfer window without securing a replacement, were unable to beat former England international Paul Robinson in the Rovers goal.[LNB] Newcastle started with the same side that capitulated in the first half against Arsenal last weekend, but their performance before the break at Ewood Park represented a marked improvement on the previous week's events.[LNB] The Magpies were almost ahead in the fifth minute, but Kevin Nolan was unable to reach Joey Barton's pull back after good work from Jose Enrique down the left.[LNB] There was a scare five minutes later when Roque Santa Cruz headed against the post after Christopher Samba had headed on Robinson's long clearance, but Newcastle hit the woodwork themselves shortly after.[LNB] Enrique's fantastic long ball sent Peter Lovenkrands galloping clear down the left, but while the Dane's lobbed shot beat Rovers goalkeeper Paul Robinson, it rebounded to safety off the crossbar.[LNB] Leon Best fired a first-time volley wide shortly before the interval, and Fabricio Coloccini came close to scoring one of the goals of the season nine minutes after the break.[LNB] The centre-half controlled Joey Barton's floated corner, lifted the ball over Jermaine Jones' head, and hammered in a left-footed volley that Robinson did well to save.[LNB] Newcastle dominated possession throughout the second half, but failed to carve out as many chances as they had created before the break.[LNB] They were rarely troubled at the back, although Steve Harper had to be alert to smother a Samba header following another long free-kick from Robinson.[LNB] BLACKBURN (4-4-2): Robinson; Salgado, Samba, Nelsen, Olsson; Jones, Dunn (Emerton 65), Nzonzi, Hoilett (Pedersen 46); Santa Cruz (Roberts 46), Kalinic.[LNB] Subs (not used): Bunn (gk), Grella, Hanley, Benjani.[LNB] NEWCASTLE (4-4-2): Harper; Simpson (Perch 76), Coloccini, Williamson, Enrique; Barton, Tiote, Nolan, Gutierrez; Best (Kuqi 90), Lovenkrands (Ranger 77).[LNB] Subs (not used): Krul (gk), Campbell, Ferguson, Guthrie.[LNB]

Source: Northern_Echo