Full-time report: Newcastle v Stoke City

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Full-time report: Newcastle v Stoke City
Newcastle 1 Stoke City 2
A late James Perch own goal handed Stoke City an invaluable three points against Newcastle United at St James' Park.
The Magpies' summer-signing could only direct his header into the back of his own net while defending a corner, as the Potters came back from 1-0 down to secure their second win of the season.
Earlier in the second half, Jones had equalised for Tony Pulis' side to cancel out Kevin Nolan's first half penalty, but Newcastle will feel they should have escaped with at least a point.
The hosts had started the first half on top, and with the classy Hatem Ben Arfa were controlling the tempo of the game's early stages, but struggled to create too many clear-cut opportunities.
Stoke goalkeeper Thomas Sorenson looked nervous throughout the first half. His clearances were unusually wayward and certainly didn't fill his back four with much confidence.
A particularly poor kick from Sorenson allowed Newcastle to attack just before the 20 minute mark, and that passage of play led to a free-kick for the hosts in a dangerous position outside of the Stoke penalty area.
Ben Arfa stepped up to take the set-piece, but the France international's left-footed curling effort sailed harmlessly wide of the Potters' goal.
The visitors were struggling to get anywhere near their opponent's penalty area. It wasn't until the 24th minute that Stoke even had their first sight of goal, and on that occasion Jones shot wide.
With chances few and far between for both sides, the opening 45 minute looked set to peter out with the scores level at 0-0. However, a moment of madness from Huth allowed Nolan to give Newcastle a priceless lead from the penalty spot.
The Stoke defender obstructed Carroll when the cross looked to be sailing into the arms of Sorenson, but the Magpies' captain wasn't about to waste the opportunity. He stepped up to confidently to dispatch his spot-kick coolly past the Stoke keeper, leaving the visitors with a mountain to climb.
Pulis knew that changes had to be made to rescue something from the match. Ricardo Fuller was sent on five minutes after the interval for Salif Diao to bolster Stoke's attacking threat, and then minutes later long-throw specialist Rory Delap was also introduced to the fray.
Before this match, the Potters had only picked up all three points once from their first five matches and sat uncomfortably in 18th place.
And on the hour mark, they wasted a glorious chance to pull themselves level. Jones done tremendously well to out jump Fabricio Coloccini near the edge of Newcastle's six-yard box. His header crashed off the bottom of Krul's near post, right into the path of substitute Fuller, who could only poke the rebound wide after coming under pressure from the impressive Mike Williamson.
By this point, Stoke were beginning to pile on the pressure, and Jones was denied by the woodwork for the second time in a matter of minutes. A whipped in free-kick from Dean Whitehead found the onrushing Jones, and his header crashed off the bar. It was another stark warning from the visitors, who were now beginning to ask the question.
Moments later Fuller was substituted off with a nasty looking shoulder injury, but the resulting free-kick, which the injured striker had won, led to Stoke's equaliser.
Huth went from first half villain to second half hero after heading Matthew Etherington's free-kick across the face of goal, and there was Jones to head in his third goal of the season from close range.
It was nothing less than Pulis' revitalised side had deserved. However, Newcastle looked stung by that setback and very nearly provided the perfect response through Carroll. The towering centre-forward fired in a fierce volley from the edge of the area with his trusty left boot, but his effort was straight down the throat of Sorenson.
The lively second half was a far cry from the dour first, and Perch even had a crack at goal 15 minutes before time. The full-back's long-range drive swerved, but the much-improved Sorenson saved comfortably.
However, the winning goal would come from Perch, only it was Stoke City who secured all three points. The defender attempted to head a corner to safety, but under pressure from Huth, could only direct his header haplessly past Krul and into the back of his own net.
With six minutes of added time, Newcastle had time to find an equaliser. And Nolan should have provided it after being teed-up inside the penalty area by substitute Jonas Gutierrez.
Perch was then presented with a chance to redeem himself, but his strike was well cleared by Huth, and Stoke held on for a crucial victory at the expense of Hughton's unfortunate men.




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