Alan Shearer started the day hoping there would still be a north east derby next season and it would still involved Newcastle United, he looks to have got half of what he wished for.
Middlesbrough confirmed promotion to the Premier League with a draw against Chris Hughton’s Bright at lunchtime.
Then with Norwich falling to defeat against Manchester United in a shocking game and Sunderland twice falling behind to Chelsea, the door was left wide open for Newcastle to make themselves massive favourites to play Boro next season.
It wasn’t to be. The fighting spirit and/or quality that Sunderland showed in battling back to win against Chelsea, was sadly absent at Villa Park.
Instead, two very very limited teams who struggled to create anything of note.
You could see Rafa Benitez on the touchline mentally tossing around the options in his head but even with using all three substitutions there was no improvement.
Alan Shearer says it is now ‘Advantage Sunderland’ after Newcastle ‘messed up’ and that is a massive advantage as Newcastle need to beat Spurs to have the faintest hope of staying up, whilst two draws against Watford and Everton would ensure Sunderland stay up – no matter what United manage on that final day.
Alan Shearer via his Twitter account today:
“It’s a massive day for North East football. Hopeful there will at least be one NE derby in the Premier League next season! #ToonArmy
“Congratulations to Middlesbrough on return to Premier League. Pleased for Steve Gibson – one of the nice guys in football.
“Norwich result opened the door out of relegation and Sunderland emphatically took the chance while Newcastle messed up. Advantage Sunderland.”
Here are the stats from BBC Sport:
Aston Villa 0 Newcastle 0
Possession was Newcastle 54% Villa 46%
Total shots were Newcastle 9 and Villa 2
Shots on target were Newcastle 3 and Villa 0
Corners were Newcastle 5 and Villa 0
Team: Darlow, Anita, Lascelles, Mbemba, Dummett, Townsend, Tiote (Perez 68), Colback (de Jong 90), Sissoko, Wijnaldum, Cisse (Mitrovic 52)
Unused Subs: Woodman, Janmaat, Taylor, Shelvey
Ref: Robert Madley
Instant Newcastle fan/writer reaction to the match go HERE