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Archived News from January 2006

REPORTS FROM MONDAY`S NATIONAL NEWSPAPERS
9th January 2006 14:45


Yesterday, we brought you the reports from just about every national Sunday Newspaper (excl News of the World). Today, here are the reports from just about every national newspaper on Monday.
Martin
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Highlight from the papers:
Daily Telegraph:
"there was little evidence of the 77 places between the teams. One had shape, a defined pattern of play, defended comfortably and played incisive attacking football - Newcastle, on the other hand, were a mish-mash of misplaced passes, heart-in-the-mouth defending, and looked devoid of inspiration or tactical nous."
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The Guardian
Shearer surfs over the turbulence in tribute to Milburn

Michael Walker at St James' Park
Monday January 9, 2006

At the Gallowgate End, in the FA Cup, a winning goal: Mansfield Town may have been lowly opposition for Alan Shearer to register his 200th Newcastle United goal but in the three warming aspects above, and one other, this was the perfect way for Shearer to join Jackie Milburn on the St James' Park podium of all-time goalscoring greats.
Eighty minutes into an otherwise forlorn Newcastle effort Shearer drilled a seven-yard shot into the bottom corner and wheeled away across the ground over which Milburn's ashes were scattered lovingly after his death in 1988. Shearer's right arm was aloft, as ever; beneath the Milburn Stand he was engulfed by his team-mates and in that smiling moment of celebration Shearer stared down the turbulence once again tearing at his beloved hometown club.

Shearer's stare carries formidable menace. He had the opportunity to practise it again on Saturday and that was the other reason why this was an appropriate occasion for his record-equalling goal. From around his fifth month at Newcastle, December 1996, Shearer has had to apply his phenomenal, fearless talent at a club that seems to have self-destructing drama as well as football as its raison d'être.
Nostalgia says it was different in Milburn's day, though Shearer could see the resonance in the fact that Milburn was not originally included in the 1955 Cup final side. When the boardroom discovered this, Milburn was re-instated and the "manager", Duggie Livingstone, soon left. But it was the goals people remembered Milburn for and some still argue the 38 in wartime should be included in his tally. On Saturday Shearer focused on another Milburn attribute. Milburn, a miner from Ashington, worked in the local Woodhorn and Hazlerigg collieries until he was 25 to supplement his Newcastle income.

"I was brought up being told how great Jackie Milburn was," Shearer said. "I never had the pleasure of meeting him but I have met some of his family. From what I know, what impresses me most is that he was a man of the people, and that is very, very important. I know that nobody has a bad word to say about him.

"I never dreamed of something like this when I signed, never in a million years did I think I would be sat up there with Jackie. I might have one or two tonight . . ."

Shearer has earned them over the years and again on Saturday: one chance, one goal. The 200th came towards the end of a grim Newcastle performance against a Mansfield side 20th in the old fourth division. Milburn, a heavy smoker, would have been through a packet of Craven A watching this.

Nil-nil, which would have been a fair result, would have left Graeme Souness staring too, at early retirement - enforced. That remains in the air: there is still no public support from chairman Freddy Shepherd. What did Shepherd think of a team that cost £45m against one that cost nothing? For all Souness's complaining about injuries Newcastle were missing only four certain starters: Michael Owen, Scott Parker, Emre Belozoglu and Steven Taylor. The visitors were without their best attacker, Simon Brown.

Newcastle were booed off at half-time; for those first 45 minutes this was Mansfield's park. Players such as Giles Coke, Adam Rundle and Alex Baptiste looked more composed than most of their hosts. The defender Jake Buxton missed a forward's chance just before the interval and Shay Given made a smart save from Rundle two minutes after it. Mansfield had shape, style and pattern, three things Newcastle lacked. It was the 75th minute before Kevin Pressman had a "proper" save to make. Five minutes later came Shearer. The goal in its own way prolongs the agony for Souness.

For one night at least Shearer could forget about that. He was off in Northumberland sharing his historic strike with his mother Anne's 60th birthday. If there was a quiet moment Shearer may have reflected on goal No1, scored on his home debut in August 1996. Those were still days of promise for Shearer and Newcastle. Wimbledon lost 2-0, Shearer powering in an 88th-minute free-kick. Kevin Keegan was the Newcastle manager.

Keegan had been fundamental to Shearer spurning Manchester United and joining Newcastle, though the world record £15m transfer fee paid to Blackburn Rovers helped. So did the input of Alastair Wilson, then of Newcastle Breweries, the club's main sponsor. Wilson died last week. Alfie McMichael, who won the 1952 FA Cup with Newcastle and a favourite player of Sir John Hall, also died last week.

It is a changing world and for much of Shearer's time at St James' it has felt like flux rather than order. His first Christmas at the club was when Keegan began to pale. Soon Keegan was gone. In came Kenny Dalglish, who had bought Shearer at Blackburn. Dalglish started well, then was suddenly gone and Shearer was dealing with Ruud Gullit. That was one of Shearer's lowest times at the club, when the fuss regarding Thierry Henry's future at Arsenal was attached daily to Shearer.

Like Livingstone before him, Gullit dropped the No9 one day and paid for it. So to Sir Bobby Robson. Shearer scored five - past Pressman - in Robson's first home game and only the blinkered fail to see Shearer's brilliance week after week. As Given said on Saturday: "Alan's carried this club for a number of years, not only with his goals, but with his personality."

Strangely Robson was one of those who stopped noticing Shearer's immense contributions. He fancied Emile Mpenza. That was partly why Robson went and Souness arrived. Now it seems Souness will depart and Shearer will again outlast a manager. That would be No6 and there have been two serious injuries as well. And yet the goals just keep on coming. That will be Shearer's epitaph. Jackie Milburn would surely approve.

Man of the match Adam Rundle (Mansfield Town)
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The Times
January 09, 2006

Shearer hits the top with a touch of drama
By George Caulkin
Newcastle United 1 Mansfield Town 0

“Geordies eat, drink and sleep football. They love the game. To many thousands it is their main interest in life. Above all else, these grand football followers really do study and discuss intelligently the game which gives them so much pleasure . . . with their deep knowledge of the game, the Geordies cannot be kidded.” Jackie Milburn — Golden Goals.



THE CURATORS OF THE Newcastle United museum, which opens this month, have just enough time to clear some space for a new exhibit. Having finally equalled Jackie Milburn's goalscoring record, Alan Shearer will donate the shirt he wore on Saturday to the proud, battered club both men have come to symbolise. As if he had not given quite enough already.

It says much about Shearer that, after summoning his 200th goal for Newcastle, personal glory did not equate to personal vanity. He did not wish his own achievement to “overshadow” the heroic performance of Mansfield Town or blur the importance of his team's 1-0 victory. He spoke of being “delighted that I've done it in front of my family, the wife and my Mam, Anne, who is 60 this weekend”.

There was eloquence when it came to Milburn's legacy. “I was brought up being told how great Jackie was,” Shearer said. “I never had the pleasure of meeting him, but I have met some of his family. What impresses me most is that he was a man of the people and that is very, very important.” And, as Milburn wrote, they are people who “cannot be kidded”.

So while St James' Park throbbed with pleasure when Shearer reached his landmark, thrashing a shot beyond Kevin Pressman and spinning towards the Gallowgate End with his right arm raised, few supporters left the stadium delirious at the memory of the 80 difficult minutes that preceded it, of Mansfield fans chanting “olé” as their team passed the ball with confidence and purpose.

Confronted by a side who are twentieth in League Two, Newcastle's position was invidious and, hampered by injuries, they achieved what was required, but there was a wider context, too. Assembled at a cost of £44million, their team contained seven full internationals, but they struggled for any fluency against a collection of free transfers and former trainees.

Of the two goalkeepers, Pressman had the least taxing afternoon. Allan Russell and Adam Rundle troubled Shay Given and Stephen Dawson missed an open net in comic fashion, albeit from some distance.

Yet not only is Shearer a brilliant striker, he is also a master illusionist, because his goals can change perceptions. “He's carried this club for a number of years with his goals, his personality and everything else, and he's done the same again,” Given said. “He 's made a habit of getting us out of trouble. He's a legend just like Jackie Milburn and one people will still be talking about in 30 years.”

Away to Heerenveen in the Uefa Cup last February, Shearer scored a 69th-minute goal that doused a lusty chorus of “Sack the Board” and perhaps prevented outright rebellion. At half-time against Mansfield, there were jeers of derision and nothing to deflect from the speculation regarding the future of Graeme Souness. The respite may be brief, but Shearer allowed an opportunity to revel in the past.

“He was always going to do it in dramatic style, wasn't he?” Lee Clark, who was in his first spell at Newcastle when Shearer scored his opening goal for his home-town club, against Wimbledon in August 1996, said. “It's typical of him. You wouldn't have wanted it to be in a 5-0 win or a consolation goal.” The manager would probably agree.

Newcastle United (4-4-2): S Given — S Carr (sub: P Ramage, 58min), T Bramble, J-A Boumsong, C Babayaro — M Brittain (sub: M Chopra, 64), L Clark, C N'Zogbia, N Solano — A Shearer, A Luque (sub: A O'Brien, 86). Substitutes not used: R Elliott, S Harper

Mansfield Town (4-4-2): K Pressman — J Buxton, R Day, A Baptiste, G Jelleyman — G Uhlenbeek (sub: N Arnold, 79), S Dawson, G Coke, A Rundle — R Barker, A Russell (sub: A Birchall, 73). Substitutes not used: J White, F McLachlan, J O Hjelde

Referee: A D'Urso
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Daily Telegraph:
Shearer record takes the heat off Souness
By Christopher Davies
(Filed: 09/01/2006)
Newcastle United (0) 1 Mansfield Town (0) 0

Graeme Souness seems less popular on Tyneside than Sunderland, so the Geordie nation will have to forgive Alan Shearer for scoring Newcastle's winning goal against a skilful, spirited Mansfield that may have given the manager a stay of execution.

Shearer's 80th-minute goal, which equalled Jackie Milburn's club record of 200, ensured that the captain and not the manager was the main talking point in Newcastle over the weekend.

It did not bother Shearer that his record-equalling goal had an element of luck about it. Taking Nolberto Solano's pass in his stride, the impression was that Albert Luque was reluctant to try his luck with his weaker right foot so he back-heeled the ball, more in hope than expectation. Shearer, however, was there to score his 200th goal for Newcastle with a typically opportunist, close-range strike, putting him level with Wor Jackie.

The captain's celebrations were more out of relief for breaking the stubborn resistance of a League Two side than any personal milestone and Shearer, who will donate his match jersey to the soon to be opened Newcastle museum, admitted: "Mansfield deserve a lot of credit for the way they played."

But this was Shearer's day and Newcastle's man o' Wor said: "I was brought up being told how great Jackie Milburn was. I never had the pleasure of meeting him but I have met some of his family. From what I know, he was a man of the people and that is very, very important.

"There is no better place to score goals than in Newcastle, and I have played all over the world. I am delighted that I have done it in front of my family, the wife and my mam, Anne, who is 60 this weekend. It has been a great day all round."

Kevin Pressman, 39, has been beaten by Shearer quite a few times during his career and the Mansfield goalkeeper said: ''He's a great pro, he works hard, he's honest and he's unselfish. You can't complain when players like him achieve what he has. He's just a fantastic advert for football, the type of player that every club would want to use as an example of how to conduct yourself and be a professional.

"Today was a great example. He had few chances, then he pops up with the winner through hard work and determination."

If Shearer's goal secured his place in Newcastle history, the tie underlined that Jean-Alain Boumsong can look a defensive liability against just about any opposition. Souness paid Rangers £8.5 million for the France international, and while few of the St James' Park regulars would argue with the £500,000, it is the £8 million that has heads shaking in bewilderment.

In the battle between the Mags and the Stags, there was little evidence of the 77 places between the teams. One had shape, a defined pattern of play, defended comfortably and played incisive attacking football - Newcastle, on the other hand, were a mish-mash of misplaced passes, heart-in-the-mouth defending, and looked devoid of inspiration or tactical nous.

Match details

Newcastle (4-4-2): Given; Carr (Ramage 59), Bramble, Boumsong, Babayaro; Brittain (Chopra 64), N'Zogbia, Clark, Solano; Shearer, Luque (O'Brien 86).
Subs: Elliott, Harper (g).
Goal: Shearer 80
Mansfield (4-4-1-1): Pressman; Buxton, Day, Baptiste, Jelleyman; Uhlenbeek (Hjelde 79), Dawson, Coke, Rundle; Barker; Russell (Birchall 73).
Subs: White (g), McLachan, Arnold.
Referee: A. D'Urso (Essex).
Att: 41,459

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Daily Mirror:
9 January 2006
STAND AND DELIVER
TOON MUST HONOUR 200-GOAL SHEARER
By Simon Bird
Newcastle 1, Mansfield 0

ALAN SHEARER already has a bar named after him at St James' Park - now it is time for a whole stand to carry his name.

When Shearer retires in May, the club should bestow the ultimate honour on a man who has earned living legend status on Tyneside.

Shearer made this cup-tie a historic occasion - Jackie Milburn's club scoring record equalled after 49 years. That's 200 goals apiece for two Geordie heroes.

Newcastle should grant their greatest prize to their greatest-ever player, a man who in the words of Shay Given "has carried the club for years with his goals and his personality".

Shearer will hang up his boots this summer to become a television pundit, but one day he will surely be back as Newcastle manager.

Before then the club should pay tribute to its talisman by opening the Shearer Stand.

Such a tribute would no doubt embarrass the man himself, but Tyneside fans would love it.

Chairman Freddy Shepherd revealed that Newcastle are aware they must honour their master striker.

"What do you give the striker with everything? You can't give him a dish or a cup, can you? So let's just say we have something special in store for Alan," he said.

Shearer's landmark goal, in the 80th minute, ensured that an embarrassingly poor performance against brave Mansfield ended on a satisfying note.


His No.9 shirt will be hung at the new museum to be opened soon at St James' Park, alongside Milburn memorabilia.


Newcastle keeper Given gave his friend a huge slap on the back at the final whistle after his rescue act and said: "I'm sure there'll be a few statues flying around. He's been a great professional and he's carried this club for a number' of years, not only with his goals but his personality too.


"He's got us through to the next round and it was a very important goal as well as one which equalled the record. He's made a habit of getting us out of trouble.


"You've got to look at Al as a legend - I'm sure that in 20 or 30 years people will still be talking about him.

"We knew that he would equal the record one day, especially when he decided to stay on for another season, but it's still a brilliant achievement for him."

Boss Graeme Souness will have been grateful for Shearer's late intervention because his side were labouring against such lowly opposition.

Mansfield, fifth from bottom in League Two, were excellent and at times it was hard to tell the Premiership side from the League Two side.

Youngsters Adam Rundle, Stephen Dawson, Giles Coke and Alex Baptiste put in superb performances. In fact The Stags created more clear chances than Newcastle with their counterattacking play and at times made their millionaire opponents look ordinary.

Given said: "Mansfield gave us a tough game but it was their cup final today, the biggest game in some of their players' lives, and they weren't going to make it easy for us.

"There's been a lot of negativity here and it was important that we stayed focused on the game. "Maybe we'll get a bit of stick because we've only won 1-0, but we're through to the next round and that's all we could do."

Of course Shearer's preferred honour is a winner's medal in the final in May. But he's seen too many chances pass by to make any rash predictions. "That's dreamland," he said.

NEWCASTLE: Given 7, Carr 5 (Ramage 58, 6), Bramble 7, Boumsong 5, Babayaro 5, Brittain 5 (Chopra 64 5), Clark 5, N'Zogbia 5, Solano 6, Shearer 8, Luque 6 (O'Brien 86).

MANSFIELD: Pressman 7, Buxton 6, Day 7, Baptiste 8, Jelleyman 6, Uhlenbeek 6 (Arnold 79), Dawson 7, Coke 7, Rundle 7, Russell 8 (Birchall 72), Barker 7 .
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Daily Mail:
Shearer notches double ton

Alan Shearer's historic 200th goal for Newcastle spared Graeme Souness a major FA Cup embarrassment in the 1-0 win over Mansfield.
The 35-year-old fired home from close range from Albert Luque's backheel 10 minutes from time to equal the legendary Jackie Milburn's club record total. It was Shearer's 21st FA Cup goal for the club and it broke Mansfield's hearts.

Shearer once beat Stags goalkeeper Kevin Pressman five times in a single game during his days at Sheffield Wednesday, but it was a measure of the League Two side's performance that he converted his only real chance.

Had he not pounced late in the game, a goalless draw could have left the under-pressure Souness facing a major revolt.

Peter Shirtliff's Mansfield will feel aggrieved not to have secured a replay at least, and had they not had a hero to acclaim on the final whistle, the bulk of a crowd of 41,459 would have left disgruntled.

Newcastle came perilously close to falling behind within a minute of the second half starting. Uhlenbeek's cross was dummied in the middle to leave Rundle bearing down on goal, but his firm first-time shot was saved by Given.

Gareth Jelleyman got in a vital block to deny Shearer on 70 minutes after Clark and Solano had played a neat one-two, and Luque sent a dipping free-kick just over two minutes later.

The post came to Pressman's rescue 16 minutes from time when Chopra deflected N'Zogbia's cross towards goal.

But just as the knives were being sharpened, Shearer chose the perfect moment to draw level with Milburn.

Luque ran on to Solano's pass before backheeling the ball for his skipper to blast a low shot past Pressman and into the net as St James' Park erupted in a mixture of joy and relief.

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Newcastle 1 Mansfield 0
THE SUN

ALAN SHEARER'S 200th goal for Newcastle spared Graeme Souness' FA Cup blushes.

The former England captain, 35, fired home from close range from Albert Luque's backheel 10 minutes from time to equal the legendary Jackie Milburn's club record total.

It was Shearer's 21st FA Cup goal for the club and it broke Mansfield's hearts.

The 200-goal hero said: “Of course, this will be an afternoon I will cherish for the rest of my life.

“It was fantastic. All my family was here, which was important.

“It's my mam's 60th birthday tomorrow, so she can have that one. They're always here watching the games.

“I'm very proud to be sitting up there alongside the great Jackie Milburn. It's a great achievement. I was brought here to score goals, and thankfully that's what I've been doing for the last 10 years now.”

The goal was all the more special for Shearer because it came on home turf.

He added: “I'm pleased it was here at St James' Park.”

“If I'd had a choice it would have been in front of the Gallowgate End where I used to stand as a kid and watch my heroes.

“I'm a very happy man right now.

“You might not believe me, but the fact that it was the winner and that it puts us into the next round is probably more important than me equalling the record.

“When I scored I felt a mixture of joy and relief, although the fact that I've equalled the record should not overshadow what was a great performance by Mansfield.

“When you look at their league position they had no right to come here and play like that. But they hustled us and harried us and caused us a lot of problems.”

Manager Souness added: “I don't think it's dawned on him yet what he's done.

“Maybe tonight it will. I don't think he's a man who goes out looking for individual honours, but it was always going to happen.

“It's a truly incredible achievement. It's generally accepted that getting goals in the modern game is harder than it was when Jackie Milburn set the record, so it's a fantastic achievement.”

Mansfield boss Peter Shirtliff paid tribute to his side.

He said: “We are a bit disappointed. I thought the players were excellent.

“But the longer the second period went on, Newcastle were getting wave after wave of attacks. We couldn't keep the ball and we couldn't get into their half at times.

“When it's a late goal like that and Mr Shearer pops up and scores we are a bit disappointed, but not dejected.”

Shearer once beat Stags' stopper Kevin Pressman five times in a single game during the keeper's days at Sheffield Wednesday, but it was a measure of the League Two side's performance that he converted his only real chance.

Shirtliff's Mansfield will feel aggrieved not to have earned at least a replay.

Despite the Toon's injury problems, Souness was still able to field a side which cost around £45million and which included seven full internationals.

Mansfield were not overawed and they bossed midfield as Stephen Dawson and Giles Coke repeatedly got the better of Lee Clark and Charles N'Zogbia to feed wingers Adam Rundle and Gus Uhlenbeek.

THE ONE WHAT WON IT ... Shearer fires past Pressman

Even so, Allan Russell's long-range effort on 18 minutes was the only time they troubled Shay Given before the break.

Newcastle fared little better. Luque carelessly fired into the side-netting when a cross might have been the better option and Nobby Solano saw a goal-bound 30th-minute effort blocked by Alex Baptiste.

The visitors almost grabbed a shock lead within a minute of the restart.

Richie Barker and Russell combined superbly before feeding Uhlenbeek. His cross was dummied in the middle to leave Rundle in on goal, but his firm first-time shot was saved by Given.

Stephen Carr fired high over from a tight angle after 49 minutes, and Pressman had to collect a looping header from Shearer six minutes later.

Carr made way for Peter Ramage and Michael Chopra soon followed him as Luque dropped in on the left side of midfield and Solano returned to his more accustomed right-sided role.

Newcastle raised their game and Gareth Jelleyman got in a vital block to deny Shearer on 70 minutes after Clark and Solano had played a neat one-two. Luque sent a dipping free-kick just over two minutes later.

The post came to Pressman's rescue 16 minutes from time when Chopra deflected N'Zogbia's cross towards goal.

Given and Ramage survived a comedy of errors on 78 minutes. They presented the ball to Dawson 35 yards out but the midfielder miskicked with the goal at his mercy.

But just as the knives were being sharpened for Souey, Shearer chose the perfect moment to draw level with Milburn.

Luque ran on to Solano's pass before backheeling the ball for his skipper to blast a low shot past Pressman.

DREAM TEAM RATINGS

STAR MAN: ADAM RUNDLE (Mansfield)

Newcastle: Given 7, Carr 5 (Ramage 6), Bramble 5, Boumsong 4, Babayaro 4, Brittain 6 (Chopra 6), Clark 7, N'Zogbia 4, Solano 5, Shearer 6, Luque 5 (O'Brien 5). Subs not used: Elliott, Harper.


Goals: Shearer 80.

Mansfield: Pressman 6, Buxton 5, Day 6, Baptiste 7, Jelleyman 6, Uhlenbeek 5 (Arnold 6), Dawson 6, Coke 7, Rundle 9, Russell 5 (Birchall 6), Barker 5. Subs not used: White, McLachlan, Hjelde.

Att: 41,459

Ref: A D'Urso (Essex).

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