Premier League Player Ratings: Newcastle United vs. Manchester United


By Mark Young.

Manchester United have gone seven points clear at the top of the Premier League but will see being held at Newcastle as two points dropped. It was a tale of two penalties not given at the final whistle. Anderson brought down Peter Lovenkrands and Danny Simpson brought down Javier Hernandez but neither were given.  Hernandez, Rooney and Giggs had good chances to win it for the Red Devil’s but Newcastle were solid and were good value for the point.

Newcastle United

26. Tim Krul

The young Dutchman had to be on his toes very early after Rooney slipped a ball in the corridor of uncertainty between goalkeeper and defenders to Hernandez but Krul got a hand to it in a really good save. Good handling throughout but surprisingly, he did not have too much else to do on the night. 7(out of 10)

12. Danny Simpson

The former United right-backs’ heart was in his mouth, when the whistle blew after Hernandez went down from his challenge. Luckily for Newcastle and Simpson it was to book Hernandez for diving. An all round solid display from a player who is getting better all the time. 6

6. Mike Williamson

Williamson had a really good game. In reality you would expect him to win most balls in the air against Hernandez and Rooney but his anticipation and awareness of the movement of Hernandez especially rounded off a good display. He did dive in at Rooney, but the England man blazed over. 7

2. Fabricio Coloccini

Coloccini would have been very disappointed if Newcastle went on to lose this game. He had a fantastic performance and should be proud of his hard earned clean sheet. He was always in the right place and kept Hernandez relatively quiet. It was a night when the Argentine was not going to be beaten. 8

3. Jose Enrique

Enrique has improved so much since the last time Newcastle were in the Premier League and now looks a solid full back.  Nani was not getting any joy off of the Spaniard. He also looked good with forward runs and was always an outlet for his team. 7

7. Joey Barton

Barton was involved in everything good that Newcastle did in attack within the first half an hour. Even though he was played out of position on the right hand side he still had a big influence. Precision passing and energy is what the ex City midfielder brought to the table. His delivery from the right hand side caused panic in the United defence. 7

8. Danny Guthrie

Guthrie didn’t have a big influence on the game like his fellow central midfielder but proved to be solid nonetheless. He always put Carrick and Anderson under pressure and unsettled the United midfield. 6

24. Cheik Tiote

Another fantastic display from the Ivorian as he once again put his stamp on a massive game. He was the screen in front of the defence and battled fantastically throughout. How Ferguson could have done with Tiote in his midfield. He has been one of Newcastle’s outstanding performers in his first season in England and his strength and superb positioning continued this.  MAN OF THE MATCH 8

18. Jonas Gutierrez

O’Shea clearly didn’t enjoy playing against the direct approach of the Argentine. He had a good amount of influence down the left hand side as Newcastle piled on the pressure early on. He made a good run early on, followed by a shot but was just off target. 7

11. Peter Lovenkrands

The only position that Newcastle lack since the departure of Andy Carroll is in attack and Lovenkrands did nothing to prove he could fill this void. He worked hard and probably should have had a penalty after going down from an Anderson challenge but was still no problem for Vidic and Smalling. 5

23. Shola Ameobi

Another striker who is struggling to fill the Carroll void was again no trouble for the centre back pairing of Manchester United. He was the focal point up front because of his size and strength but got no change off of Vidic and Smalling. 6

Subs:

22. Stephen Ireland

Another former City midfielder finally got his debut at St James’ Park after moving on loan from Aston Villa in January.  He maybe could have won with a volley that drifted just wide. He did not have much time on the ball with his 70th minute introduction. 6

30. Nile Ranger

Ranger did not have much time to influence the game after he replaced Ameobi. His fresh legs brought the Newcastle attack hard work. 5

Man United

1. Edwin Van der Sar

Van der Sar had literally nothing to do in the game, even when the early pressure was on. Like the young Dutchman in the opposite goal, the veteran’s handling was good. 6

22. John O’Shea

For the second time in a week O’Shea looked off the pace again. He was troubled by Gutierrez and was beaten, too easily, too often and will surely lose his place in the side when Rafael is fit again. 5

12. Chris Smalling

Smalling was preferred to Ferdinand at centre back at St. James’ Park and was once again, solid when called upon. He did well against the strength of Ameobi and does look right at home alongside his captain. 7

15. Nemanja Vidic

Once again, the Serbian bruiser provided the United defence with quality and stability. He was winning important headers all night long and whenever an important block needed to be made, Vidic was lurking. 7

3. Patrice Evra

Evra is slowly getting back to his best. He was unable to stamp any kind of attacking authority on Saturday against City but was a force going forward against Newcastle. Evra set up Giggs in the second half with a forward run but the Welshman hit his shot wide. He had a tough game, defensively against Barton but dealt with him relatively well. 7

17. Nani

Nani was frustrated by Jose Enrique for the majority of the night and struggled to have much of an influence. He dived in the first half to try and win a penalty but the referee took him to one side and gave him a stern talking too. For all the good Nani has done this season, the diving needs to stop. Ronaldo did it, so now it’s time for his compatriot to do the same. 6

8. Anderson

After a positive introduction in the FA Cup Semi-Final, the Brazilian midfielder got his chance but he didn’t play well. He was sloppy on the ball and always tried to play difficult passes. Sometimes less is more and that is surely the case with Anderson. HE was also very lucky to not give away a penalty after a sloppy tackle. 5

16. Michael Carrick

Carrick showed that his mistake at Wembley was not playing on his mind. He was slow to begin with but he grew into the game. The native Geordie helped set up United attacks with accurate passes from the middle of the park. 6

11. Ryan Giggs

It seems strange to say but Giggs looked a little uncomfortable on the left of midfield. This is probably due to the fact that he was world class in the centre for the double header against Chelsea. He improved in the second half but really should have scored from ten yards out. 6

14. Javier Hernandez

The Little Pea had another energetic game. He would have scored in the first minute if it wasn’t for Krul’s awareness and was always a livewire in attack. Unfortunately for United his movement was well sniffed out by the Newcastle defenders. He was judged to have dived in stoppage time as United looked for the winner and was booked. 6

10. Wayne Rooney

Wazza was back after his domestic suspension and his creativity was in effect early on as he set up Hernandez for the early chance. He was also through on goal himself a few minutes later but blasted over the bar. He always wanted the ball but didn’t have much of a chance in the second half apart from a late header. Rooney’s influence will be huge in the run in. 7

Subs

25. Antonio Valencia

Came on for the ineffective Anderson with 20 minutes remaining and stretched United’s play. Produced a late cross for Rooney. 6

7. Michael Owen

Came onto a crescendo of boo’s with ten minutes remaining and would have loved to score. Owen had little impact as the clock ticked down. 5

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