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Strange Story Of Newcastle United v The Play Off Winners

8 years ago
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Great news! There’s a home game on Saturday and I bet everyone’s super excited. I mean, let’s look at the facts: United are without Loic Remy, having failed to score in every game he’s missed this year, and the last match at Fulham was depressingly dull and ultimately pointless.

In fact it was only outdone in the worst spectacle of the day stakes by Crystal Palace’s bore draw with the mackems, so even better news is that they are the visitors this weekend.

The ugly side of the play offs…

Unfortunately, I don’t think this particular match was ever going to turn out well irrespective of the build up. Palace, you see, are last season’s play-off winners and the recent home record against the team in this position has been as clear an indication as any of the decline of our club.

Time was when the side sneaking up via the end of season lottery would have a torrid time in the Premier League and slide straight back down, getting a swift beating at St. James’ en route. Perhaps the gap between the divisions has closed a bit since those days, but certainly the role of Newcastle has become less ominous for visiting newbies. In the decade since Sir Bobby Robson led us to the Champions League the home results against play-off promotees are as follows:

2013-14 Crystal Palace ??

2012-13 West Ham 0-1

2011-12 Swansea 0-0

2010-11 Blackpool 0-2

2008-09 Hull 1-2

2007-08 Derby 2-2

2006-07 Watford 2-1

2005-06 West Ham 0-0

2004-05 Crystal Palace 0-0

2003-04 Wolves 1-1

So that’s one win in the last nine, with some very poor results in there associated with the worst of times. You may not need reminding that the calamitous defeat to Hull saw the first ever ‘Ashley out’ protests and ultimately got us relegated, finishing a point behind Hull.

Similarly, the Blackpool loss may be fresh in the mind as the game that ended an unbeaten home record lasting over a year. There are other notable dark days that aren’t so obvious though.

Derby were on their way to becoming the worst ever side in Premier League history when they snatched one of their 11 points at St James’, with United grateful to a late Mark Viduka equaliser sparing further embarrassment.

The 1-1 with Wolves was the final home game and saw fifth place United booed off and abandoned for a lap of honour after a season of consistent underachievement.

However, the most comically memorable was the turgid 0-0 draw with Saturday’s opponents in 2005, with the junk stuck to the seats for an advertising campaign used to make impromptu hats and paper aeroplanes. The challenge of getting them on the pitch proved far more entertaining than the sorry excuse for a game, as United exhibited a classic display of nowt to play for and couldn’t care less.

I’m sure this time it’ll be very different……

You can follow Jamie on Twitter @Mr_Dolf

Betting – No Newcastle Goalscorer 3/1 Newcastle To Win From Behind 11/1 – Gouffran To Score First Goal 8/1

To view all Newcastle v Crystal Palace betting click HERE (Prices can fluctuate up and down)

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