Grimsby Town 0 Newcastle United 1

Shearer's torpedo sinks brave Mariners

It may be assumed that no one craves a trophy more this season than Alan Shearer in his valedictory campaign, and it was the Magpies' modern talisman who struck the decisive blow, moving a step closer to Jackie Milburn's club record of 200 goals with his fourth of the season - 196th all told - some 10 minutes from time.

However, it was a moment soured by bad feeling. Shearer's anger at a first-half challenge by the Grimsby captain, Justin Whittle, spilled out even after the final whistle, when the furious Newcastle captain eschewed any pretence at diplomacy in condemning an elbow-led assault by the home player, which left him needing three stitches in a cut lip at half-time.

"It was blatant yet the referee, who was five yards away, did nothing," Shearer said. "It would have been easy for me to stick one on him because that is what I wanted to do but the better away to answer it was to come away with a goal and a victory."

Whittle had been on the receiving end of an earlier challenge from Shearer but the apology offered by Shearer appeared to count for nothing. His anger was shared by Souness, who spoke to the referee, Mark Halsey, about the incident at half-time.

"I've rarely seen Alan so angry," Souness said. "It was a very dangerous challenge and it was fitting he should have the last word by scoring the winning goal."

The Grimsby manager, Russell Slade, insisted that if Whittle's conduct had been outside the spirit of the game it was out of character. "I did not see the incident but Justin has an exemplary record in disciplinary matters," he said.

"All I can say, without having seen the television replay, is that both he and Alan Shearer are competitive individuals and that sometimes in a cup tie you can get a very bruising encounter. I hope [the incident] does not overshadow the game because I was very proud of the way my team performed."

None the less, the second-round conquerors of Tottenham could not quite raise their game enough in front of a raucous full house at Blundell Park, a ground with happy memories for Newcastle, who clinched promotion to the Premier League on their last visit, in 1993. The striker Gary Jones momentarily had the crowd on their feet when he headed a first-half free-kick wide, but Newcastle generally had their measure.

Shearer's decisive strike came when he took advantage of a slip by Paul Bolland after Michael Chopra had made a incisive run along the right to score with a powerful strike.

Grimsby Town (4-4-2): Mildenhall; McDermott, Whittle, G Jones (Gritton, 71), Newey; Cohen, Kalala, Bolland, Andrew (Parkinson, 71); G Jones, Reddy. Substitutes not used: Ramsden, Barwick, Toner.

Newcastle United (4-4-2): Given; Ramage, Taylor, Bramble, Babayaro; Solano (Clarke, 72), Faye (Brittain, 72), Parker, N'Zogbia; Chopra, Shearer. Substitutes not used: Caig (gk), Elliott, Boumsong.

Referee: M Halsey (Lancashire).

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there