Newcastle United 1 West Bromwich Albion 1: Ayoze Perez averts disaster at St James’s Park

JOY ... Ayoze Perez.
JOY ... Ayoze Perez.

NEWCASTLE United ended a run of eight successive defeats at St James’s Park this afternoon – but the club remains deep in relegation trouble.

John Carver’s depleted side came from behind to draw 1-1 against West Bromwich Albion.

Ayoze Perez cancelled out an opening strike from Victor Anichebe before the break.

Sunderland had won 2-0 at Everton earlier in the day to climb above Newcastle in the Premier League table.

And relegation rivals Aston Villa and Leicester City also won their games, but Hull City’s home defeat to Burnley ensured that Newcastle ended the day two points clear of the relegation zone.

West Brom’s Craig Dawson struck the post with a header early in the game, and Newcastle’s Ryan Taylor, playing as a defensive midfielder, put a free-kick just wide of Boaz Myhill’s goal in the 22nd minute.

BATTLE ... Craig Gardner and Remy Cabella.

BATTLE ... Craig Gardner and Remy Cabella.

Visiting defender Joleon Lescott also stopped a close-range shot from United midfielder Moussa Sissoko on the line.

News of goals at the King Power Stadium and Villa Park started to filter through to St James’s Park during the half.

Carver’s side – whose vulnerability to set-pieces had been exposed by Leicester City a week earlier – dropped into the bottom three in the 32nd minute.

Craig Gardner swung in a free-kick from the right, and Anichebe got ahead of his marker to head the ball past Krul.

Newcastle rallied, and the went into the break on level terms thanks to a strike from Perez, who shot past Myhill in the 41st minute after West Brom failed to clear a Taylor set-piece.

The strike took United out of the drop zone, and Burnley took the lead against Hull with 60 minutes gone at St James’s Park.

Carver threw on fit-again and suspension-free striker Papiss Demba Cisse in the 69th minute in place of Emmanuel Riviere, who hadn’t had a clear sight of goal.

Newcastle survived a scare in the 73rd minute – West Brom substitute Sadio Berahino hit the bar – and Sammy Ameobi replaced Ayoze Perez for the last five minutes.

Sissoko forced an injury-time save from Myhill, and the game ended all-square.

NEWCASTLE UNITED: Krul, Anita (Abeid, 90), Coloccini, Dummett, Gutierrez, Sissoko, R Taylor, Colback, Perez (Ameobi, 85), Riviere (Cisse, 69), Cabella. Subs not used: Woodman, Satka, Aarons, Gouffran.

WEST BROMWICH ALBION: Myhill, Dawson, McAuley, Olsson, Lescott, Gardner (Berahino, 69), Fletcher, Mulumbu (Morrison, 55), Yacob, Brunt, Anichebe (McManaman, 78). Subs not used: Rose, Wisdom, Baird, Ideye.

Goals: Anichebe 32, Perez 41

Bookings: Gutierrez 31, Dawson 52, McManaman 79, Johnson 82, Yacob 85

Referee: Chris Foy (St Helens)

Attendance: 47,894