ONSIDE: More twists to come in Newcastle United survival battle

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I WENT to see that new Osama bin Laden movie at the weekend.

Zero Dark Thirty – why do I keep on calling it Brave Two Zero? – is certainly worth a look although the ending was a little predictable.

Hopefully there won’t ever be a need for a sequel either.

Anyhow, speaking of predictable endings, how many of you out there felt that Newcastle United were going to throw away their deserved two-goal interval lead at Aston Villa on Tuesday night?

I certainly did. Even before the second-half home onslaught started.

Newcastle United just do not do easy.

Your average pundit felt that all the Magpies had to do was go a goal in front and the diminishing band of Villa fans would turn against their team with the result that an away win was guaranteed.

Well that theory might work if a Manchester City or United of this world are the visitors.

But not when Newcastle United are in town.

Still, an away win is an away win and no Newcastle fan is going to grumble given that there hasn’t been one this season until Tuesday’s 2-1 victory.

It is not Newcastle’s fault either that Villa didn’t wake up until they were already two goals behind.

Had the Magpies played as poorly as their hosts did in the first 45 minutes then any futile fightback would have received little sympathy.

Newcastle at least showed a battling side rarely seen this season as Paul Lambert’s side belatedly bombarded Tim Krul’s goal.

Yet there is a fear that new signings such as Moussa Sissoko and Yoan Gouffron and the fit again Steven Taylor and Yohan Cabaye are not quite match fit.

If that is the case then there must be a doubt that all four will last 90 minutes against Chelsea on Saturday.

Given that a trip to Tottenham follows the Blues’ visit then the league table might not look as cosy for United come February 9 as it does today.

Expect more twists in the plot before safety can hopefully be assured.