Newcastle United 1-1 Sunderland
11.37 – Welcome to our coverage of the Tyne-Wear derby. Beyond the fiery rivalry, this is an intriguing fixture even just on Premier League terms. Newcastle United are defying the usual in-built borders and ceilings in the league by challenging for a Champions League place after some really astute expenditure; Sunderland have surged up the table under Martin O’Neill, even if that has been checked by two recent defeats to Arsenal and West Brom. Newcastle, for their part, threw away a two-goal lead against Wolves last week so will be looking to atone for errors too.
12.23 – Oh, all kicking off as the majority of the players on the pitch get into a bit of a scrum. It’s been simmering since Lee Cattermole’s challenge in the first 40 seconds and it threatened to boil over there as McClean went in late on Danny Simpson. The full-back then got up and squared up to him, with Tim Krul then getting involved before everyone else did. Both McClean and Simpson go into the book.
12.36 – Newcastle beginning to come back into the game having clearly been affected by the fractiousness of the occasion.
13.08 – Members of the teams’ backroom staffs have been sent off for fighting in the tunnel. This looks like it’s going to keep on frothing.
13.21 – And despite Newcastle dominating this second half, it’s Sunderland who should have gone ahead. Krul’s trailing leg just about keeps out McClean’s effort but the winger might well have scored.
13.39 – Calls for a Newcastle penalty as the ball strikes John O’Shea’s chest/arm but Mike Dean waves it away. It would have been harsh given that his arm was down by his side.
13.46 – PENALTY to Newcastle!
After so many close calls, Newcastle get one! And no ambiguity about that. Frazier Campbell slides in recklessly on Ameobi.
13.50 – Breaking news: Andre Villas-Boas has been sacked
14.03 – FULL-TIME: Newcastle United 1-1 Sunderland
An angry, anxious and ultimately entertaining game but, paradoxically, one that ends with both teams happy given the passage of the game. Well, everyone except Lee Cattermole who is then sent off after the game had finished for words to Mike Dean.
In the grand scheme of things, though, Newcastle a bit too far away from Arsenal in fourth now.