Newcastle's Europa League nerves are settled by Haris Vuckic strike
Newcastle United 1 Atromitos 0 (Newcastle win 2-1 on aggregate)
St James' Park
Friday 31 August 2012
Haris Vuckic's first senior Newcastle United goal was enough to send the Magpies into the group stage of the Europa League last night.
The 20-year-old Slovenia international struck 21 minutes into the second leg of the club's qualifying play-off match with the Greek side Atromitos to seal a 2-1 aggregate victory.
The youngster, who came on for the injured Ryan Taylor, needed just 10 minutes to make his mark, turning smartly on to Danny Simpson's throw-in before lashing a left-foot shot past Charles Itandje with the help of a slight deflection from 22 yards.
Despite dominating on the night, Alan Pardew's men were unable to kill the tie off before the final whistle and enjoyed a major escape when their goalkeeper Tim Krul appeared to fell Chumbinho in the box two minutes before the break, only to see the Brazilian midfielder pick up a booking for diving.
Had it not been for the excellence of the Itandje, who at times was left to repel Newcastle single-handedly, the home side's place in today's draw in Monaco would have been assured long before the game drew to a close. In the event, the first European fixture on Tyneside since 2007 ended in victory.
Newcastle United Krul, Simpson, Coloccini, Williamson, Ryan Taylor, Obertan, Bigirimana, Perch, Marveaux, Gosling, Ba. Substitutes Harper, Cabaye, Cissé, Amalfitano, Vuckic, Tavernier, Campbell.
Atromitos Itandje, Skondras, Fitanidis, Lazaridis, Giannoulis, Iglesias, Brito, Dimoutsos, Chumbinho, Epstein, Karamanos. Substitutes Radman, Tavlaridis, Kuqi, Beljic, Nastos, Balas, Garcia.
Referee S Studer (Switzerland) .
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