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Season 2011-12
Orlando City (a) Friendly


Saturday 23rd July 2011,
7.30pm (local) 00.30 (BST)

 Florida Citrus Bowl, Orlando, Florida, USA


Admission: $25 and upwards


Orlando City

Newcastle United

1 - 0




Half time: Orlando 0 Newcastle 0

Substitute Dennis Chin had been on the field barely two minutes before he picked up the ball and hared forward before slipping his pass infield to
Kevin Molino just inside the United box, who shot past the helpless Forster 0-1

Full time: Orlando 1 Newcastle 0

We Said

Alan Pardew commented:

It cooled down, which helped us, but the overloading of the players showed. The opposition had more energy than us, and in the end it told, although we still scored a perfectly good goal, and Dan (Gosling) should have had a penalty in the first half. 

"We had tough refereeing decisions on us, but we cant make excuses. We were rusty with our movement and passing, and if Im honest, the fact that we never got to practice on the pitch was a feature. It was sticky, and we had a problem with it.

I didnt really want to start Demba, with his knee, and Shola doesnt feature well on that pitch either. I had to protect one or two, and unfortunately with the one or two players weve got missing, some of them did a bit more work than Id have liked.

It looks like Ryans just tweaked his groin. Its not major, but we had to take him off.

They Said

City coach Adrian "inchy" Heath said:

"I wanted to make sure we gave a good account of ourselves and we did more than that.

"Id love to take Alan (Smith) over here at some point. We have spoken a couple of times so far and it seems at the moment he wants to sit out the last year of his contract at Newcastle. So I may have to wait but if anything changes, he can come to Orlando whenever he wants. I know he likes it here and Id love to sign him."

Scorer  Kevin Molino wasn't supposed to be playing was included after missing a flight to Dominica, where he was due to play for Trinidad & Tobago's U23s an Olympic qualifier. He said:

"It's an incredible feeling, everything happens for a reason. I'm going to cherish this for the rest of my life." 

Following his presentation with a Newcastle shirt by the away side:

It is something I will cherish for the rest of my life."


United were without Danny Simpson after the defender was allowed to return home early from the tour - his lass is about to give birth. 


If only we'd used one of those 3 timeouts - and just gone home....

The second game of United's pre-season US jaunt ended in defeat at Orlando's Citrus Bow

l, on an unfamiliar surface that was apparently astro turf but bore all the hallmarks of a banana skin.... 

And in addition to contending with a plastic pitch (which looked to have been sanded in parts), Alan Pardew's side faced a lower league side in the latter stages of their domestic season and more than keen to impress in front of a 2011-high crowd containing various excitable locals.

Add a referee who could scarcely have been more of a Homer had his local been Moe's Tavern and all of the ingredients were in place for a night to quickly forget.

None of those factors though could truly disguise a disjointed display from the United, beaten by a 76th minute shot from Trinidad & Tobago striker Kevin Molino - who was only in Florida and available to play after having managed to miss the flight to link with the rest of his international squad.


Tonight's injury victim was Ryan Taylor, playing at right back and looking in some discomfort early on with a groin strain. He soon departing to be replaced by Jose Enrique - passed fit after having missed the Kansas game with a hamstring strain and slotting in to his usual left back berth, James Tavernier moving over to the other flank.  

Orlando were resplendent in an all red strip that bore a notable similarity to our 2009 pre-season tormentors Leyton Orient, but showed little in what was a dull first 35 minutes when we at least had the excuse of coming to terms with conditions underfoot.

The final ten minutes of then saw chances at both ends as the game began to open up, Fraser Forster came quickly off his line to break up one attack, while Enrique and Peter Lovenkrands tested home 'keeper Gallardo. 

Two notable penalty shouts within a minute however left United players roaring at the referee, Mister Sandoval ignoring both a clear foul on Dan Gosling in the area and then some ball handling by a home defender that would have graced the Superbowl.

Ten minutes into the second half and with even the slack-jawed match announcer supplying less inane interjections and the first signs of a Mexican wave appearing round the ground, a second successive draw looked a reasonable bet.

However Orlando built up a head of steam following a third foul on a visiting player that was ignored, Lovenkrands pulled back by his shirt on the edge of the area. Enrique's wayward dribble on the edge of his box almost proved costly on 65 minutes, but Matt Luzunaris could only ping his shot wide of the goal.

Lewis Neal then did exactly the same from Orlando's next attack before Luke Boden dragged his effort over Forster's crossbar and into the City support who by now had raised the noise levels once again.

Having made no changes at the interval, United finally tried to freshen their ailing attack by introducing Haris Vuckic, before a triple switch saw the remaining three outfield subs on the bench arrive: Ameobi, Ba & Abeid.

However almost the first action of the former pair was to kickoff again after City's opener - and things didn't improve noticeably, with an ongoing inability to create anything resembling a scoring chance or even an opening for a shot.

Tavernier did his best to rectify that with six minutes of normal time remaining, breaking forward before laying a low diagonal ball across the area for Vuckic to reach and stab into the net - only for it to be ruled out for offside.     

Later attempts to save face saw Steven Taylor's half-hit effort bundled away from the six yard box and Tavernier again set up a chance with a centre from the United right, only for Abeid to arrive and put his effort narrowly wide.

On a night when good news was in short supply, Forster overcame a slightly nervous first half when he came but failed to reach two corners and made three noteworthy stops to deny Orlando after they'd taken the lead.

The energetic performances of Fabricio Coloccini and Jose Enrique were major positives (although thr latter seems to have his own agenda), as was another outing for the recovering Dan Gosling. While they at least attempted to bomb on, most of the others simply bombed.

Those players absent from the touring party have enhanced their reputations, with the return of Joey Barton to the squad eagerly awaited, both for his midfield ability and leadership qualities.    

Having anything other than low expectations for a Newcastle pre-season game is always unwise and of course that 1-6 toe-curler at Orient was followed by a successful Championship season. However it's fair to say that we're entitled to expect a little more than this. 

For those US-based Newcastle followers present, this game did provide them with an authentic Magpies match day experience - it's just a shame for them that match day was akin to our FA Cup defeat at Stevenage....

Quote of the night from a local fan - "if Joey Barton were here tonight he'd have a killed a guy". Probably one of his own team.... 


Page last updated 23 July, 2012