Football: Fowler rolls back the years to spoil Shearer's big night

Manchester City 1 Newcastle United 1

CERTAIN STRIKERS may come and go but two of the Premiership's most enduring and prolific marksmen were on target last night as Manchester City and Newcastle United drew at Eastlands.

The goalscoring prowess of Nicolas Anelka and Craig Bellamy will doubtless be missed in the months ahead but this was a reminder that both clubs can still call upon top-quality forwards. Alan Shearer became the first player to score 250 Premiership goals when he drove powerfully past David James early on while Robbie Fowler's 149th strike in the top flight, courtesy of a second-half penalty, earned his side a point.

A draw was the fairest outcome of a game that promised much yet delivered frustratingly little. "We've got to battle and scrap sometimes to get results," said Kevin Keegan, the City manager. "It was a game when the teams cancelled each other out."

Newcastle have still not won away in the League since November, a sequence that might well have come to an end had they displayed a little more ambition after taking an early lead with their first attack. "We made a great start but didn't go on from there," said Graeme Souness, the Newcastle manager. "They didn't hurt us much in the first half but we made it difficult for ourselves by conceding two minutes after half time."

It was an opening goal that had more statistical significance than beauty. Titus Bramble, in his own half, chipped towards Shearer and Ben Thatcher misjudged the flight, allowing the ball to pass over his head. Shearer advanced into the penalty area and lashed home his landmark goal in much the same way that many of the preceding 249 have been dispatched. "I think he's been the greatest English centre forward you've ever had," Souness said. "He scores the spectacular goals as well as the tap-ins, both with his feet and his head. He's a pleasure to work with because he comes into training every day as though it is his last."

City began the second half strongly and were level within five minutes after Jon Macken's flick allowed Shaun Wright-Phillips behind the Newcastle defence. Bramble tripped the winger to concede an obvious penalty and was fortunate that Andy D'Urso, the referee, decided it was punishment enough. Fowler stepped up to score his seventh of the season.

As City pushed forward with increasing intent, Newcastle introduced the fit-again Nicky Butt midway through the second half to a predictably hostile welcome from the home crowd. But the former Manchester United midfielder's presence did little to stem the tide, even if City only occasionally threatened to turn their territorial advantage into a winning goal.

No one was more frustrated than Fowler. Lurk as he might, no further chances came his way and the former Liverpool forward will have to wait at least until Sunday against Chelsea, to reach a landmark of his own and score a 150th Premiership goal.

Manchester City (4-4-2): James; Mills, Dunne, Distin, Thatcher; S Wright- Phillips, Bosvelt, Barton, Musampa; Macken (B Wright-Phillips, 82), Fowler. Substitutes not used: Weaver (gk), Onuoha, McManaman, Jordan.

Newcastle United (4-4-2): Given; Carr, Bramble, O'Brien, Babayaro; Dyer (Butt, 63), Faye, Bowyer, Jenas; Ameobi (Kluivert, 65), Shearer. Substitutes not used: Harper (gk); Hughes, Robert.

Referee: A D'Urso (Essex)

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Business Development Manager / Sales

£30 - 40k (£65k Y1 OTE Uncapped): Guru Careers: We are seeking a Business Deve...

Guru Careers: Graduate Media Assistant

Competitive (DOE): Guru Careers: We are looking for an ambitious and adaptable...

Guru Careers: Solutions Consultant

£30 - 40k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Solutions Consultan...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£30 - 35k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before