Aston Villa res (h) Premier Reserve League North
31mins Chopra penalty 3-1
Half time: Newcastle 4 Villa 1
Full time: Newcastle 5 Villa 1
Tommy Craig said:
"I suppose 5-1 kind of flattered us slightly because it was a more even game than that. But our finishing on the night was the difference and we produced five quality finishes.
"The way Michael and Shola took their goals was fantastic and because of that we won the game, but you expect that from players with their calibre.
"Shola was on a hat-trick and he'd been booked and I didn't want him to get another one - it was wise to take him off.
"We finished with four or five knocks and we would have taken Michael Chopra off, who had picked up a knock. But it happened at the same time and we had Saturday in mind.
"It was handbags at 10 paces. It was an overheated incident and nothing to worry about."
A hat trick from Shola Ameobi and two more from strike partner Michael Chopra blew away Aston Villa's unbeaten ten- match run at a wild and windy Kingston Park on Monday evening.
And with Graeme Souness present to witness Lee Bowyer's successful return from injury, both forwards took the opportunity to remind the manager of their prowess in front of goal.
The game began at a frantic pace, with Bowyer twice dumped over in the opening stages, before finding himself in the referee's notebook after just five minutes for an ill-timed lunge.
Our first chance arrived two minutes later, when rapid interplay between Shola and Chopra released the latter to race into the box, only for Austrian U21 'keeper Olejnik to block his shot at the expense of a corner.
At the other end Caig was called into action on 10 minutes to deny Eric Lund - who look suspiciously offside but was allowed to run and shoot.
The see-saw nature of the contest then saw Chopra blast over the bar on 19 minutes, before Villa went ahead seconds later.
Caig blocked one shot from Isiah Osbourne, but fumbled the ball and in the confusion Sam Williams forced the ball over the line.
Back came United though, with a double blow that ultimately changed the course of the match in our favour.
Cave's fine tackle allowed Clark to advance through midfield, before releasing Ameobi to charge into the area and trick his way into a shooting position before netting with an angled shot from close range.
Better was to come from the restart, as Villa immediately surrendered possession in their own half and watched in dismay as Chopra and Bowyer combined to set Ameobi away again, this time side-footing home from a central position in the box.
Michael Chopra then got in on the scoring act as he made it 3-1 from the penalty spot just after the half hour, Lee Bowyer having been tugged in the box.
Goal number four on the night and Chopra's
eleventh of the season arrived two minutes before the break, as he got on the
end of Brittain's right-wing centre to shoot home.