Toon edge past Atromitos

Haris Vuckic's first senior goal was enough to send Newcastle into the group stage of the Europa League after a 1-0 win over Atromitos.

Last Updated: 30/08/12 at 22:26 Post Comment

Vuckic: Celebrates his strike

Vuckic: Celebrates his strike

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

The 20-year-old Slovenia international struck 21 minutes into the second leg of the club's play-off clash with Greek side Atromitos to seal a 2-1 aggregate victory.

However, although Alan Pardew's men dominated on the night, they were unable to kill the tie off before the final whistle and enjoyed a major escape when goalkeeper Tim Krul appeared to fell Chumbinho in the box two minutes before the break, only to see the Brazilian midfielder pick up a booking for diving.

Had it not been for the excellence of Atromitos keeper Charles Itandje, who at times was left to repel Newcastle single-handedly, the home side's place in tomorrow's draw in Monaco would have been assured long before the game drew to a close.

In the event, the first European fixture on Tyneside since March 2007 ended in victory for the Magpies and booked an extended stay in the tournament.

Pardew was confident enough to use only four of the men who started at Chelsea on Saturday evening - Krul, Fabricio Coloccini, Danny Simpson and Demba Ba - with one eye on Sunday's Barclays Premier League clash with Aston Villa, and his faith appeared to be well-founded before the break.

With wide-men Gabriel Obertan and Sylvain Marveaux tormenting full-backs Konstantinos Giannoulis and Ioannis Skondras respectively, the Magpies were on the front foot from the off despite losing Ryan Taylor through injury with just 11 minutes gone.

Taylor's departure - he collapsed in agony after challenging for a ball on the touchline and after treatment was helped down the tunnel - saw James Perch drop in at left-back to accommodate Vuckic in the middle of the field.

The youngster needed just 10 minutes to make his mark, turning smartly on to Simpson's throw-in before lashing a left-foot shot past Itandje with the help of a slight deflection from 22 yards.

Marveaux had earlier tested the keeper with a well-struck effort after surging into the box from the left, and Itandje found himself in the thick of the action as the half wore on.

He produced a fine one-handed save after Ba's 27th-minute attempt had taken a much more substantial deflection on its way to goal, and was relieved to see Obertan's strike fly wide with the help of a touch off a defender seven minutes before the break.

The traffic was largely heading towards Itandje's goal with opposite number Krul having only to mop up occasionally as lone Atromitos frontman Tasos Karamanos was left isolated with his midfielders battling manfully to stem the tide.

However, the visitors might have been back in the game and the tie two minutes before the break after Krul gave them hope.

The Holland international made a mess of dealing with Denis Epstein's long-range shot and when Chumbinho attempted to collect the rebound, appeared to bring him down.

Swiss referee Stephan Studer blew immediately, but instead of pointing to the spot, he booked the midfielder for diving much to the player's astonishment.

Obertan might have extended Newcastle's lead within seconds of the restart after being played in by Ba, but once again Itandje did just enough to deny him.

The keeper did not need to be at his best to field Ba's ambitious 30-yarder, and Krul and his defenders were happy to see the flag go up seconds later as Chumbinho collected Brito's long ball and finished with some aplomb.

With the game entering its final 30 minutes and the Magpies yet to end it as a contest, the Greeks made their final push, committing men to the search for an equaliser which would take the tie into extra-time.

Coloccini headed Gael Bigirimana's 66th-minute free-kick high over as Newcastle responded, but there was a growing sense of unease around the stadium.

Marveaux wasted a two against two break when he failed either to get a shot away or find team-mate Ba, but Obertan should really have put the result beyond doubt when he broke clear with 19 minutes remaining, but again could not beat Itandje.

Karamanos fired high over Krul's goal, but Elini Dimoutsos was even more wasteful 11 minutes from time when he dragged a shot across goal with only Krul to beat.

Epstein blasted inches over the top in injury-time, but there was no way back for Dusan Bajevic's battlers.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

More Match Results

Thursday, 28 August 2014
Rio Ave 1-0 Elfsborg  
Club Brugge 1-0 Grasshoppers  
Din Zagreb 2-1 Petrolul Ploies  
Leg Warsaw 2-0 FC Aktobe  
M'gladbach 7-0 Sarajevo  
Hull City 2-1 Lokeren Report
Inter 6-0 Stjarnan  
Nacional 2-3 Dinamo Minsk  
Tottenham 3-0 AEL Report
Villarreal 4-0 Astana  

Footer 365

Carlton Cole doesn't know if he will stay at West Ham next season

West Ham striker Carlton Cole revealed he still does not know where his future lies beyond this season.

Louis van Gaal believes David De Gea will stay at Manchester United

Louis van Gaal believes David De Gea will stay at Manchester United despite speculation linking him with Real Madrid.

Roy Hodgson wants Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard on England coaching staff

Roy Hodgson wants Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard on the England coaching team when they retire from playing.

Mail Box

Only One Real Manager Of The Year

Winning the Premier League with the best squad in the Premier League is only par; Ronald Koeman did a whole lot better. Plus, the last word on Raheem and...

Don't Slate Sterling For Ambition...

Raheem Sterling deserves credit for his desire to quit Liverpool, according to one mailboxer. Also: why football should not be compared to business and Degsy's latest spot of bother...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company