Newcastle United vs. Metalist  0 - 0


Pardew bemoans disallowed goals

15 February 2013 01:27

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew was left 'very disappointed' after two disallowed goals cost his side against Metalist on Thursday.

Papiss Cisse saw two efforts ruled out for offside either side of half-time, with television replays showing both decisions to be questionable in the first leg of the Europa League round-of-32 tie.

Pardew refused to blame the officials as Newcastle earned a 0-0 home draw, and has called on his players to use the decisions as motivation when they travel to Ukraine.

"Both goals were goals. You see the replays and you can see that," Pardew told reporters after the game.

"The first one I was a little undecided, but the second was a definite goal, and that was tough to take because in these games the margins are the difference, and the benefit on those lines are meant to be for the striker.

"That's the rule. Both decisions were level. I thought the referee was excellent tonight. The two decisions were the linesman's call.

"When you get decisions like that go against you it puts fire in your belly. We've come off the pitch tonight very, very disappointed."

The encounter marked another frustrating outing for Cisse, who – despite seeing two of his efforts ruled out – also missed a host of chances.

But Pardew is confident the striker is close to finding his fantastic form of last season.

"He hasn't seen the replays yet, and I think that could hinder his sleep somewhat," Pardew joked.

"He looks sharp and keeps getting in there. The last three or four games he's had more chances than he has all season, and (Moussa) Sissoko, who was absolutely brilliant again, is opening up space for him.

"I think all strikers feel a lot better when they score, and I think when he looks back and sees them, they'll put fire in his belly. He's a natural finisher, and he was very unlucky not to score tonight."

Pardew was also full of praise for Metalist and is anticipating a difficult return leg.

"They were itching for a game and they played with enthusiasm, and they played well, for long periods of the game," he said.

"But I don't think my team could have played much better and we should have won the game today.

"The more I saw of them, I knew they were a very, very good side. They'll be a tough nut to crack in these two legs."


Family reasons almost led to Coloccini´s Newcastle exit

14 February 2013 01:58

Newcastle United captain Fabricio Coloccini has defended his decision to try and force a move away from St James' Park.

The Argentina international cited homesickness as reason for attempting a switch to Buenos Aires club San Lorenzo in last month's transfer window.

Newcastle refused the transfer request and were left fuming when the centre-back expressed disappointment at failing to secure a move in an open letter to San Lorenzo fans.

Coloccini, who will lead his team-mates out to face Metalist Kharkiv in the first leg of their Europa League knockout tie on Thursday, believes his push for a return home was justified.

"I didn't regret it because I think that family is first. I think that I did everything and I wrote it in the letter," the 31-year-old said.

"Sometimes third parties don't understand you or contracts become more important than feelings.

"But I also understand them because that's what contracts are for and you have to respect them."

After an impressive campaign last term that saw Alan Pardew's side flirt with Champions League qualification, Newcastle have struggled this season and have turned attention to securing their top-flight status.

Losing top scorer Demba Ba to Chelsea in January was a key blow to their survival hopes, but Coloccini believes the club compensated with some handy acquisitions.

The arrivals of Moussa Sissoko and Mathieu Debuchy have shored up Pardew's side and sparked an upturn in form, and Coloccini is confident of his side producing a strong finish to the campaign.

"A bunch of good new players have arrived with positive things for the team," he said.

"Now we are bigger and also we are in the Europe League so I think that with a bigger team we can cope with the next fixtures."


Pardew seeking Europa League crown

13 February 2013 08:36

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has expressed his desire to deliver Europa League success to the Premier League club.

Pardew's side face Ukrainian outfit Metalist Kharkiv on Thursday and though they are just two points and four places above the Premier League relegation zone, the Englishman says he will not rest key personnel.

English sides have often treated the Europa League as an inconvenience, but Pardew is proud to be in the competition and determined to make it worthwhile.

"It's competition we'd all love to win," Pardew told his club's official website.

"It's difficult to get through the group stage, make no mistake, so we don't want that hard work to be for nothing.

"But the last 16 is in our reach and there could be some big ties ahead for us. I'm sure our fans would relish bringing more big European nights to St James' Park so we'll be doing everything we can to progress and deliver that."

The 51-year-old was keen to stress that he will pick a strong side for the clash against the Ukrainian visitors, and lauded Newcastle's new-found squad depth courtesy of their January splurge.

"Metalist are a good side, you just have to look at the teams they finished above in their group to realise that, so they'll get our full respect," Pardew added.

"I'll be picking a strong side for Thursday. The new lads who arrived last month have given us greater depth, so I'll take advantage of that with my team selection."

Premier League table

# Team MP D P
13 28 -15 30
14 28 -23 30
15 28 -11 29
16 28 -12 27
17 28 -18 27
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