West Ham United 0 Newcastle United 0 match report: Alan Pardew and Co look for silver lining

 

Amid reports of disharmony, strife and cliques, Newcastle United's players, management and supporters are all agreed on one thing: they must win at Queen's Park Rangers next Sunday to ease fears of relegation. Ease, but not banish them even then, as the final fixture is at home to an Arsenal side who will almost certainly still be playing for third or fourth place.

The air of satisfaction in some quarters over Saturday's goalless draw at West Ham would have been more understandable had Wigan Athletic and Aston Villa not pulled off stunning late away victories. Once those results were digested, Newcastle's was a good point only in the sense that a fifth defeat in seven games would have been worse, especially coming on top of demoralising home defeats by Sunderland and Liverpool that have made their goal difference the worst of all the threatened teams.

Positivity is required now and apart from admitting that he dare not watch Wigan's game in hand at home to Swansea tomorrow, the Newcastle manager Alan Pardew led the way. "It's not just between us and Wigan," he said. "There are a lot of teams in the mix now. The most important thing for us is to win our next game and see where that leads us. The point could be absolutely crucial. But we've got to make it crucial now. We've got to get three at QPR – that will probably be the key."

Jonas Gutierrez, who was unexpectedly solid as a holding midfielder alongside Cheick Tioté, added: "I think we showed that was a performance of a united, committed team. Everybody could see we were fighting for each other. It has been a difficult few weeks, and we haven't been solid or compact – but today we were. If we'd played more games like this in recent weeks I don't think we'd be talking about a relegation battle." That is precisely the complaint of supporters and many of the region's journalists.

Coming after last season's fifth place, for which Pardew was voted manager of the season by his peers, the current campaign has been all the more disappointing. He blames injuries – Hatem Ben Arfa was forced off on Saturday and his replacement Shola Ameobi suffered an early knock – as well as the sort of bad luck that for struggling teams rarely evens itself out. Newcastle felt they had another example when Papiss Cissé's shot was possibly just over the line before Winston Reid cleared it. Against that, they survived two strong penalty appeals in the second half, when Rob Elliot and the returning Fabricio Coloccini had to be at their best.

Substitutions: West Ham United Collison 6 (Vaz Te, 58), M Taylor (Demel, 81), J Cole (Jarvis, 84). Newcastle United Shola Ameobi 6 (Ben Arfa, 66), Gosling (Gouffran, 76).

Booked: West Ham O'Brien. Newcastle Tioté.

Man of the match Elliot.

Match rating 5/10.

Possession: West Ham 51%. Newcastle 49%.

Attempts on target: West Ham 3. Newcastle 5.

Referee P Dowd (Staffs).

Attendance 34,962.

Sport
Tim Sherwood raises his hand after the 1-0 victory over Stoke
footballFormer Tottenham boss leads list of candidates to replace Neil Warnock
Arts and Entertainment
L to R: Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Captain America (Chris Evans) & Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) in Avengers Assemble
film
News
Nigel Farage celebrates with a pint after early local election results in the Hoy and Helmet pub in South Benfleet in Essex
peopleHe has shaped British politics 'for good or ill'
News
news
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Adnan Januzaj and Gareth Bale
footballManchester United set to loan out Januzaj to make room for Bale - if a move for the Welshman firms up
News
i100
Travel
Suite dreams: the JW Marriott in Venice
travelChic new hotels in 2015
Arts and Entertainment
Sink the Pink's 2013 New Year's Eve party
musicFour of Britain's top DJs give their verdict on how to party into 2015
Sport
Yaya Sanogo, Mats Hummels, Troy Deeney and Adnan Januzaj
footballMost Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
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.

Day In a Page

Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
The Last Word: From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015

Michael Calvin's Last Word

From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015
Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that? The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year

Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that?

The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year
Hollande's vanity project is on a high-speed track to the middle of nowhere

Vanity project on a high-speed track to nowhere

France’s TGV network has become mired in controversy
Sports Quiz of the Year

Sports Quiz of the Year

So, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry, his love of 'Bargain Hunt', and life as a llama farmer

Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry and his love of 'Bargain Hunt'

From Armstrong and Miller to Pointless
Sanchez helps Gunners hold on after Giroud's moment of madness

Sanchez helps Gunners hold on

Olivier Giroud's moment of madness nearly costs them
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
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