Newcastle held by West Ham

Newcastle are still looking for their first win of the season after being held to a goalless draw by West Ham at St James' Park.

Last Updated: 24/08/13 at 19:05 Post Comment

Stewart Downing takes on Davide Santon at St James' Park

Stewart Downing takes on Davide Santon at St James' Park

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Chances were few and far between in a disappointing affair, and the closest either side came to scoring was in stoppage-time when substitute Sammy Ameobi's cross came back off the post and Yoan Gouffran somehow missed the rebound from four yards out.

After a quiet start West Ham almost gifted Newcastle the lead on 12 minutes when Winston Reid, under pressure from Papiss Cisse, rolled the ball just wide of his own far post with goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen stranded.

West Ham created the first chance of the game five minutes later when Guy Demel dug out a cross from right to the unmarked Modibo Maiga, but he could only head his effort wide of the target.

Newcastle were struggling to deal with long balls into their box and on 26 minutes West Ham went close to scoring when Reid got on the end of Maiga's flick-on, but under pressure from Tim Krul the defender could only lift his shot over the crossbar.

Newcastle's defence was all at sea again on 32 minutes when they failed to deal with James Collins' deep free-kick into the box and Reid was just inches away from diverting the ball into the net.

All the home side could offer in response were a couple of efforts from Hatem Ben Arfa and Moussa Sissoko which both flew well wide of the target.

Stewart Downing, on his full debut for West Ham, should have done better eight minutes before the break when Matt Jarvis burst down the left and picked out the former Liverpool man inside the six-yard box, but the winger failed to direct his header on target and the chance went begging.

The visitors continued to look the side most likely to score at the start of the second half and West Ham really should have broken the deadlock on the hour mark when Downing sent over an inviting cross to an unmarked Kevin Nolan inside the box, but the former Newcastle midfielder got his attempted header all wrong as it ended up coming off his shoulder and drifted wide.

Newcastle continued to huff and puff in search of a goal, but they could not get past a resolute West Ham defence with Jaaskelainen rarely troubled.

West Ham substitute Joe Cole was inches away from scoring on 84 minutes when he turned on the edge of the box and fizzed his curling shot just wide of the target.

West Ham thought they had won it in the closing stages when Maiga slotted home from close range, but his celebrations were cut short by an offside flag.

Newcastle then almost stole the three points deep into stoppage-time when Sammy Ameobi's cross came back off the far post and Gouffran then somehow missed the rebound with the goal at his mercy.

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