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Season 2009-10
Coventry City (a) Championship

In association

Date: Wednesday 9th December 2009, 7.45pm.

Venue: Ricoh Arena

Dry and cool 

Admission: £25 (£27 on the night)



Coventry City

Newcastle United

0 - 2



45+1 mins Shola Ameobi beat Keiren Westwood after turning Leon Barnett with surprising ease and finding a gap between 'keeper and post. 1-0

Half time: City 0 NUFC 1

82 mins
Marlon Harewood was sent away down the left and he waited for the overlapping Jose Enrique who delivered a perfect ball across for Nile Ranger to sidefoot home from close range and open his United account. 2-0

Full time: City 0 NUFC 2

We Said

Newcastle manager Chris Hughton said:

"It’s wonderful. To be where we are at this moment speaks volumes for this team. We hope it gives us the confidence and the strength to keep getting good results.

"There are a few records that have been mentioned. The most important thing for us, though, is to keep getting results and, if we’re able to keep a good gap where we are, then that’s the real bonus.

"We can do all the talking, clean sheets and winning runs but, ultimately, there’s only one thing that matters and that’s at the end of the season."

They Said

City boss Chris Coleman commented:

"Sometimes failure is experience and education.

"We have no-one to blame but ourselves for the position which we find ourselves in, but runs like this can make you stronger as a unit and that's what I believe will happen to us.

"We thought we had turned a corner when we played well and drew with QPR and Crystal Palace, but we shot ourselves in the foot badly at Scunthorpe last weekend.

"We were always going to be up against it against Newcastle this week, but the lads gave everything and we were unlucky to be beaten by the best team in the division.

"We will turn it around sooner rather than later. We have too much quality in the squad to keep struggling."


City v Magpies - last 20:

2009/10 won 2-0 Ameobi, Ranger
2008/09 won 3-2 Milner, N'Zogbia, Owen (LC)
won 2-0 Shearer, Gallacher
1999/00 lost 1-4 Domi
1998/99 won 5-1 Shearer 2, Dabizas, Speed, Glass
1997/98 drew 2-2 Barnes, Lee
1996/97 lost 1-2 Shearer
1995/96 won 1-0 Watson
1994/95 drew 0-0
1993/94 lost 1-2 O'Brien
1988/89 won 2-1 Hendrie, Mirandinha
1987/88 won 3-1 D.Jackson, Goddard, Gascoigne
1986/87 lost 0-3 
1985/86 won 2-1 Stewart, Reilly
1984/85 drew 1-1 Beardsley (pen)
1977/78 drew 0-0
1976/77 drew 1-1 Gowling
1975/76 drew 1-1 Bird
1975/76 drew 1-1 Gowling (FAC)
1974/75 lost 0-2

Total record against Coventry:
  P W D L F A
SJP 30 19 5 6 68 31
HR/RA 31 9 10 12 43 42
League 61 28 15 18 111 73
SJP(FA) 3 3 0 0 10 1
HR 2 1 1 0 5 4
RA(LC) 1 1 0 0 3 2
Cup 6 5 1 0 18 7
Tot 67 33 16 18 129 80

It's now 371 minutes since we have conceded a goal.

This was our seventh consecutive league win, emulating the run of Sep/Oct 1996.

Chris Hughton extended his 100% win record since taking permanent charge to six matches.

Our twelfth clean sheet of the campaign was also secured.




Since seeing Ian Stewart grab a last minute winner back in August 1985 (and then walking all night until 6am trying to find a boat - it's a long story....) I've lost count of the number of times I've been to Coventry and Highfield Road or the Ricoh Arena.

I've also lost count of the number of victories I've seen here. Whether it be Rambo Reilly, Paul Gascoigne, Mirandinha, John Hendrie, Steve Watson, Alan Shearer, Kevin Gallacher or Michael Owen grabbing the goals, the trip away from Coventry has mostly been a happy one - thankfully I wasn't in the country when we suffered the 4-1 thrashing in the white away shirt.

I even managed to talk my way out of a speeding ticket when John Hendrie's winner had fooled us into thinking we might stay up, so this is definitely a lucky ground for me. And so it proved again this time round.

Did we deserve the win? Possibly but only because the opposition were desperately poor. Chris Coleman should be worried if his lads "gave everything" and turned in a display as woeful as this....

It certainly wasn't one of our better displays but I'll certainly not tire of trotting out the 'winning ugly' cliché if we are still 12 points clear of a playoff spot after the next 20 games.

To beat Watford with ten men and then repeat the scoreline after this disjointed display doesn't say much about the quality in this division but our goals were two rare moments of class on an evening where both sides struggled to find any fluency, with too many passes going astray and long balls rarely finding their target.

Shola turned and fired home in first half added time to give us the lead and some solid defending and excellent goalkeeping saw us hold that lead until substitute Nile Ranger forced home a Jose Enrique cross near the end.

United were only on level terms thanks to Steve Harper and the woodwork when Leon Best's fierce shot was superbly touched onto the bar by the 'keeper and Michael McIndoe headed against the angle seconds later.

Ameobi's opener came in the first minute of added time when he beat 'keeper Keiren Westwood after turning Leon Barnett with surprising ease. There was a split second of incredulity that the ball had actually gone in before the celebrations started, with Shola showing few signs of such skill up to that point.

Barnett was lucky to still be on the pitch after a blatant pull on Peter Lovenkrands as he scampered onto a loose ball but incredibly both linesman and referee failed to see anything untoward. The quiet Dane protested long and hard in the minutes that followed, suggesting that Barnett was guilty.

After the break United were penned back in their own half for much of the first 20 minutes and only some more smart stops from Harper and dogged defensive work from Steven Taylor and Fabricio Coloccini kept us in front.

Ranger seemed a certain scorer not long after he and Marlon Harewood had replaced Lovenkrands and Ameobi but with the goal gaping some last ditch defending somehow denied him as he seemed to have an open goal at the far post.

However, with eight minutes remaining Harewood was sent away down the left and he waited for the overlapping Enrique who delivered a perfect ball across for Ranger to sidefoot home from close range and open his United account.

United held firm to claim another clean sheet - our 12th of the campaign - and extend our gap at the top of the league as midweek results again went in our favour.

My worries about the strength of our squad remain, but in picking the team on the way to the ground we actually realised that we are fairly strong in most areas, apart from at full back. We certainly have a first eleven more than capable of gaining promotion but a bad spate of injuries in our back four could still derail this train.

Surely it wouldn't be Ashley's greatest ever gamble to find a few quid to fund some cover for our back four in January but anything's possible with this current regime. 

You can't help feeling things are suspiciously quiet at the moment and even Andy Carroll's misdemeanours that saw him absent from the squad - don't seem to have attracted the attention that recent dressing room spats at Stoke and QPR have.

Enjoy it while it lasts....

Niall MacKenzie 


Page last updated 09 February, 2021