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Wigan Have Never Won At SJP - Now Isn't That A Worry?

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11 Oct 2010 17:09:13

Wigan Have Never Won At SJP - Now Isn't That A Worry?

Yep ... Wigan have never won at St James' Park ... but am I tempting fate saying that? NEWCASTLE v WIGAN - THE HISTORY  2008/2009 Fri 26 Dec Wigan Ath. 2 - 1 Newcastle Utd. Premier League     Sat 15 Nov Newcastle Utd. 2 - 2 Wigan Ath. Premier League    2007/2008 Wed 26 Dec Wigan Ath. 1 - 0 Newcastle Utd. Premier League     Sat 01 Sep Newcastle Utd. 1 - 0 Wigan Ath. Premier League    2006/2007 Sun 25 Feb Wigan Ath. 1 - 0 Newcastle Utd. Premiership     Sat 19 Aug Newcastle Utd. 2 - 1 Wigan Ath. Premiership    2005/2006 Sat 15 Apr Newcastle Utd. 3 - 1 Wigan Ath. Premiership     Wed 30 Nov Wigan Ath. 1 - 0 Newcastle Utd. League Cup     Sat 15 Oct Wigan Ath. 1 - 0 Newcastle Utd. Premiership    1953/1954 Wed 13 Jan Wigan Ath. 2 - 3 Newcastle Utd. F.A. Cup     Sat 09 Jan Newcastle Utd. 2 - 2 Wigan Ath. F.A. Cup         LAST TIME WIGAN CAME TO ST JAMES' PARK ... 2008/9 NEWCASTLE UTD 2 WIGAN 2 NEWCASTLE: Given, Beye, Bassong, Coloccini, Jose Enrique (N'Zogbia 68), Gutierrez (Owen 68), Barton (Guthrie 16), Butt, Duff, Ameobi, Martins. Subs Not Used: Harper, Cacapa, Geremi, Carroll. WIGAN: Kirkland, Taylor (De Ridder 81), Bramble, Boyce, Figueroa, Scharner, Cattermole, Palacios, Kapo (Brown 90), Camara (Kilbane 90), Valencia. Subs Not Used: Pollitt, Cywka, Kupisz, Routledge. Att: 47,657 Newcastle old boy Titus Bramble returned to Tyneside with a vengeance to deny his former club a much-needed victory over 10-man Wigan. The defender, derided during his time at St James' Park, headed home an 89th-minute equaliser just when it looked as though substitute Michael Owen - who had earlier been guilty of a glaring miss - and Obafemi Martins had snatched a win from the jaws of defeat. Trailing to Ryan Taylor's third-minute strike despite Emmerson Boyce's 54th-minute dismissal, the Magpies belatedly launched a fightback - which saw the two strikers score inside seven minutes at the end of the game. But with seconds of normal time remaining, Bramble headed a Daniel de Ridder corner past Damien Duff on the line to snatch a point. Newcastle were awful for much of the match, and it was not until Wigan had been reduced to 10 men that they started to make their presence felt as an attacking force. Having slipped back into the bottom three after last weekend's 2-1 defeat at Fulham, the home side ran out knowing nothing other than a third successive home win would do. But they were simply desperate in an opening 45 minutes which served once again to underline the paucity of quality in a squad which has been systematically weakened under the managers who have succeeded Sir Bobby Robson over the last four years or so. Wigan arrived with both first-choice strikers - Emile Heskey and Amr Zaki - sidelined by hamstring injuries, and with Mario Melchiot having joined them on the casualty list. But within three minutes of the kick-off, they were in front when Taylor's dipping 22-yard volley sped past an astonished Shay Given into the top corner. But if the opening goal represented a setback, more worrying was the home side's failure to respond in anything like the fashion manager Joe Kinnear would have expected. The deserved 2-0 victory over Aston Villa in their last outing at St James' Park was a distant memory, as roughly the same team were out-played and out-muscled in the middle of the pitch - and until the final few minutes of the half, they allowed once error-prone former Magpie Bramble the most untroubled of returns. Given had to make regulation, by his standards, saves from Taylor and Wilson Palacios as Nicky Butt, Joey Barton - before he limped off injured - and Danny Guthrie thereafter were given the run-around. It was perhaps telling that the most frequent ball-carriers for Newcastle as they attempted to fight back were full-backs Habib Beye and Jose Enrique - with the Spaniard in particular wasteful in possession. However, they should have been back on level terms in injury time when - after exchanging passes with strike-partner Shola Ameobi - Enrique surged into the box only to see his shot block by goalkeeper Chris Kirkland. There was little doubting the tone of Kinnear's half-time comments - although whatever he said appeared to have little effect as the game resumed. That changed six minutes later when Boyce, who had earlier been booked for a foul on Jonas Gutierrez, felled Ameobi and was dismissed - despite his claims he had got the ball. Butt, Fabricio Coloccini and Martins failed to hit the target with headers as the home side piled on the pressure - and Jonas was unable to collect Butt's through-ball after running in on goal. But in the meantime, Antonio Valencia had forced a fine 57th-minute save from Given as Wigan made light of their numerical disadvantage. Kinnear made his move with 22 minutes remaining when he sent on Owen and Charles N'Zogbia for Jonas and Enrique, and the England striker's big chance arrived within two minutes when Martins skipped around Taylor and squared - only for the £17million man to side-foot wide from six yards. Owen then saw a header tipped over by Kirkland, although the game would have been over had Henri Camara's 76th-minute shot not come back off the post with Given beaten. But the former Real Madrid front man made no mistake when, after Kirkland had parried Ameobi's long-range effort, he slid in to convert the rebound. Martins thought he had won it when he hammered a left-foot shot past Kirkland with three minutes remaining, but Bramble chose the perfect moment to exorcise his Tyneside ghosts at the death.  


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