Redknapp’s run comes to an end as Ameobi gives Newcastle Christmas cheer
Premier League: Newcastle 1 QPR 0
Brave QPR lost their unbeaten record under Harry Redknapp as Shola Ameobi struck at the death to give Newcastle the win.
The Magpies had been the better side from start to finish with goalkeeper Tim Krul an observer for most of the proceedings.
The Tyneside outfit were, however, wasteful in attack and it wasn’t until the final minutes that they were able to reach the defence.
Newcastle made the better start and forced early corners but were unable to test QPR goalkeeper Rob Green.
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However, the R’s stopper was left thankful for the awarness of Clint Hill to clear away Mike Williamson’s looping header.
Magpies forward Demba Ba started to cause Fabio Da Silva problems down the right flank and the Manchester United loanee was left on the floor on two occasions in the space of three minutes.
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The young full back was struggling to cope and gave the ball away to Cisse but his cross was dealt with by Green.
The R’s were struggling to have any play in the final third, making set pieces more important.
But manager Harry Redknapp would not be happy with the 33rd minute corner from Alejandro Faurlin that went straight into Magpies goalkeeper, Tim Krul.
Fabio redeemed himself when it mattered most as he produced a fantastic tackle to deny Cisse and win QPR a goal kick at the same time with 10 minutes to go until half time.
Newcastle continued to have shots from range but both Demba Ba and Cisse were guilty of blazing them over.
Indeed, the closest Newcastle came to a goal was when Fabrico Coloccini had a shot from 25 yards that deflected wide of Green’s goal.
The R’s were able to successfully weather the Newcastle storm at a very wet St James’ Park in the first half and they started the second on the front foot as Djibril Cisse had a shot flash wide, thanks to a deflection.
The Magpies had their best chance of the match when Jonas Gutierrez’s cross was headed over by Cisse.
The Magpies nearly took the lead in bizarre circumstances when Vurnun Anita’s free kick nearly squirmed its way past Green but the England international was alert to parry clear.
The chance lifted the home side and Fabio had to be alert to clear with Ba lurking.
Anita went close again, this time from a corner, and Green was quickly to his near post to clear.
The siege continued and Shola Ameobi, on for Cisse, headed wide from a good position as the R’s resolve held out again.
Green was called into action again with 73 minutes gone as Ba’s downward header forced him to dive to his right and smother the ball.
But as the match ticked into the final 10 minutes Newcastle took the lead.
Sylvain Marveaux nearly sealed the game two minutes later when a counter attack fell to him but Green kept him at bay.
The R’s looked to mount a fightback and were given an additional five minutes to rescue a point but they were unable to beat Krul, who dealt with Adel Taarabt’s free-kick and secured the game.
Newcastle: Krul; Simpson, Williamson, Coloccini, Santon; Perch, Tiote (Marveaux 77), Anita; Cisse (Shola Ameobi 61), Ba, Gutierrez (Obertan 61).
Unused Substitutes: Harper, Birgirimana, Sammy Ameobi, Ferguson.
QPR: Green, Ferdinand, Nelsen, Hill, Fabio, Mbia, Faurlin (Derry 79), Granero (Wright-Phillips 56), Taarabt, Mackie, Cisse (Hoilett 64).
Unused Substitutes: Murphy, Diakite, Traore, Onuoha.
Referee: Kevin Friend.