FT: Newcastle 0 Metalist Kharkiv 0

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And that's it, Newcastle are held to a goalless draw, they now face a tough task in the second leg in Ukraine next week.

Goryainov is Metalist's hero again, Cisse heading straight at him from close range.

Ameobi wins a header in the box and it almost falls to Cisse but Metalist are able to hack clear.

Torres is booked for a lunge on Sissoko.

There will be three added minutes.

Metalist playing keep-ball, running down the clock.

Willian goes into the book for a dive inside the penalty box. Blatant from the substitute.

Metalist break and Gutierrez takes a booking for the team with a cynical body check.

Set piece for Newcastle, Coloccini and Taylor go forward.

Ameobi goes down in the box under Gueye's challenge, referee not interested and neither was Ameobi. Nothing doing.

Metalist bring on Jaja for Cristaldo - Brazilian for Brazilian.

Sissoko's second foul in quick succession earns him a booking.

Goryainov saves to his right from Sissoko's long-range shot.

Shola Ameobi comes on for Tiote. Attacking change from Newcastle,

Cisse has another goal ruled out for offside. It is a tight one, Sissoko whipped in a cross from the right after Willian slipped and Cisse deflected it in. Cisse looked level on the replays...

Willian replaces Marlos for Metalist.

Newcastle pressing, ball almost drops to Coloccini in the box.

Marveaux overruns it after a stray pass at the back from Metalist. Goryainov is off his line quickly to avert danger.

Coloccini dwells on the ball briefly but his back pass to Krul is safe enough in the end.

Goryainov saves again from Cisse after Santon got in down the left and pulled it back.

Scrappy couple of minutes as both sides take a breather. Not much happening.

Crowd of 30,157 at St James' Park, few better ways to spend Valentine's Day.

Nice turn from Sissoko on the right but his hopeful pass to Cisse is easily cut out.

Metalist enjoying a good spell of possession, frustrations are starting to mount for Newcastle.

Obertan makes way for Marveaux.

Sissoko is welll shackled by the Metalist defence, perhaps time for Pardew to think about making a change?

Taylor has to hurdle the ball boy after making a no-nonsense clearance.

Newcastle are almost in through Sissoko at one end and then Metalist break and earn themselves a corner. The referee waved play on after Tiote brought down Edmar in the centre circle. Tiote is already on a booking but stays on the field - for the time being.

Yanga-Mbiwa, making his first start for Newcastle tonight, curls a long-range effort over the bar.

Cleiton Xavier plays in Cristaldo but he fails to hit the target, finding the side netting instead - great chance wasted.

Good delivery and Sosa heads narrowly wide.

Metalist enjoy some sustained possesion and win a corner.

The second half is under way and Cabaye immediately finds Cisse with a long, angled pass. Cisse blazes over the bar with his right foot from a tight angle.

After a cagey start, the game opened up and there were chances at both ends. Cisse had a goal wrongly ruled out for offside, while Krul was called into action a couple of times as Metalist threatened on the break.

There will be one minute of added time at the end of the first half.

Gutierrez overruns it after the Metalist defence parts like the Red Sea. Hard to believe this is still 0-0.

Sissoko is almost in at the other end after a one-two with Tiote splits Metalist open. Goryainov is off his line quickly to smother the danger. Exciting game.

Marlos is in again down the right but again can't find the final pass.

Obertan weaves away from a couple of tackles down the right - he's switching flanks regularly - and wins another Newcastle corner.

Pinball inside the Metalist penalty box after Taylor won a header from Cabaye's long free-kick. Obertan fires it back into the box and Cisse turns it goalwards - but it loops up to Goryainov.

Sissoko fails to find the right pass when deep inside the penalty box and Metalist are able to clear. A very open game now.

Marlos - who has been a constant threat down the right for Metalist - turns past Santon but fires into the side netting. Should have crossed it.

End-to-end stuff in the last five minutes, it has really opened up. Newcastle having lots of joy through Gutierrez down the right but Metalist dangerous on the break.

Cabaye goes into the book after another coming together with Cristaldo. Cabaye's forearm was a bit high but he didn't make much contact.

Cabaye splits the defence and Cisse is through one-on-one with goalkeeper Goryainov, who stands his ground to make the save. Cisse's shot was straight at him.

Krul is down quickly at his neat post to save again from the resulting corner.

Krul dives to his left to make a smart stop from Cleiton Xavier's powerful drive. Taylor had backed off to allow the Metalist striker to get his shot off. Corner to Metalist.

Tiote barges Marlos and is the first player to have his name taken by the referee, who didn't have much choice.

Torres fouls Tiote as tempers start to rise. Gutierrez was left on the floor after a collision - although he appears to be alright.

The linesman is in a flag happy mood. This time Obertan is ruled offside when he looked to be level.

Woeful decision from the linesman. Obertan played in Sissoko down the left. Sissoko drew the goalkeeper and squared to Cisse. No Newcastle player was offside at any point.

Cisse puts the ball into an empty net after Sissoko squares it too him - he celebrates but the flag is up for offside.

Newcastle are lucky to escape after Cleiton Xavier and Sosa get in the way of each other when the ball dropped to an unmarked Sosa inside the penalty box.

Cabaye and Cristaldo get a talking to from the referee. Cabaye bundled Cristaldo to the ground but was unhappy with what he felt was a stiff arm in his face. Wasn't much in it.

Newcastle are having some joy down the right side, Obertan - briefly switching flanks - is released and Metalist have to scramble in defence.

Sissoko finds some space on the right after a quick throw-in and then switches the play to Obertan coming in off the left wing. Obertan cuts inside and scuffs his right-footed shot just wide of the near post.

Poor corner from Cabaye, failed to clear the first man.

Cabaye releases Gutierrez down the right flank, his cross is blocked but Newcastle have a corner.

Cisse plays a one-two with Sissoko and splits the Metalist defence wide open but he had strayed offside for the return pass.

Metalist have started to offer more of a threat going forward, Krul gets down low to cut out a Marlos cross from the right.

Good tackle halts Sissoko's charge, needed to be made as Newcastle had two-on-two otherwise.

Coloccini heads clear and Sissoko breaks..

Metalist enjoy their first spell of sustained possession and Santon eventually concedes a corner.

Corner for Newcastle, first of the match, is easily headed clear.

Metalist goalkeeper Goryainov has to be alert to clear his line after being undersold a backpass. Cisse wasn't far away from blocking his clearance.

Newcastle have had all the possession but there is little space for them once the ball gets into midfield.

Metalist have a packed midfield and are content to let Newcastle's defenders pass it around amongst themselves.

Santon looks for Cisse over the top but his pass is too heavy.

Newcastle content to knock it around at the back, they've had all the possession thus far.

Metalist get us under way.

Newcastle haven't lost at home in the Europa League/Uefa Cup since 1997 - a span of 25 matches.

The players make their way onto the pitch...

Metalist have spent their league's winter break on two training camps, one in the UAE and the other in Benidorm. Their starting line-up tonight includes five Argentineans and four Brazilian-born players.

Pardew: "We've got our strongest available side out tonight."

Alan Pardew on Metalist: "They are very good at keeping the ball, technically very good and fast on the break. We need to be on our guard."

Metalist means metal worker in Ukrainian... They have finished third in the Ukrainian Premier League in each of the last six years.

Thomas Johnston: "Newcastle have got this one in the bag 2-1."

Bold prediction from Jack Smith: "Should be simple for Newcastle tonight, I reckon 4-0. Cisse to get two, Cabaye and Sissoko the others."

Metalist topped Group K with four victories from six matches but the Ukrainian Premier League is currently in the middle of a three-month winter break. They have a heavy South American influence in their team and arrived in the north east early to prepare, drawing 1-1 draw with Northern League side Whitley Bay on Sunday.

Newcastle have made three changes to the side beaten 2-1 by Tottenham last time out. Perch drops to the bench, while Debuchy and Gouffran are not eligible for this competition. Gouffran would have missed out anyway due to a leg injury. Yanga-Mbiwa, Tiote and Obertan come into the starting XI.

The referee tonight is Tom Harald Hagen from Norway.

FC Metalist Kharkiv: Goryainov, Villagra, Gueye, Torsiglieri, Fininho, Torres, Marlos, Edmar, Cleiton Xavier, Sosa, Cristaldo. Subs: Disljenkovic, Berezovchuk, Shelayev, Blanco, Jakson, Krasnopyorov, Willian.

Newcastle: Krul, Yanga-Mbiwa, Steven Taylor, Coloccini, Santon, Obertan, Tiote, Cabaye, Gutierrez, Sissoko, Cisse. Subs: Elliot, Simpson, Anita, Perch, Marveaux, Shola Ameobi, Haidara

Good evening and welcome to our coverage of the Europa League last 32 first leg encounter between Newcastle United and Metalist Kharkiv at St James' Park. As we build up to kick-off at 8.05pm (GMT), you can drop me an email to graeme.mair@bskyb.com with hopes and predictions for the game.

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