Joe Ironside abandons Newcastle to put Cambridge in FA Cup dreamland | England Cup


As a child, Joe Ironside loved to watch his idol, Alan Shearer, play Newcastle United center-forward.

Ironside was back at St James’ Park wearing the Cambridge United No.9 shirt and suggested he had learned a thing or two from all those afternoons spent studying Shearer’s move.

In the 56th minute, the Middlesbrough-born striker scored the kind of goal his role model would have cherished to not only book League One’s exceptional Mark Bonner side a place in the fourth round, but subject Newcastle to the murder genre. giant that makes the FA Cup so special.

Cambridge have 41 places under Eddie Howe’s side on the league scale, but you wouldn’t have known that for much of a tie that ended with Newcastle still only winning. one game all season long and Bonner’s players frolicking the pitch, hugging everyone in sight.

Previously, it had looked like fate might be tempted when, around 10 minutes, the opening chorus of ‘Premier League, are you kidding’ descended from the dizzying peak of Leazes End which was home to 5,000 Cambridge fans. .

Their team had started well, defending with industry, intelligence and compactness as they constantly questioned the intentions of the theoretically strong Newcastle starting XI. Although Kieran Trippier raised the tone with a few high-caliber touches on his debut, Howe’s side played with a distinct and disturbing uncertainty.

Kieran Trippier takes on Cambridge’s Harrison Dunk on his Newcastle debut in which he showed his class, but ultimately fell horribly flat. Photograph: Owen Humphreys / PA

Having recorded just one win since August, Newcastle often didn’t seem to trust their abilities and instincts, often taking a touch too many or delaying a pass a few seconds too long. One of the few players who seems immune to such introspection and knows better than to overthink is Allan Saint-Maximin, but even Howe’s great improviser has often found himself cleverly followed by his League One keepers.

In addition, Saint-Maximin suffered the indignity of being, on more than one occasion, too easily dismissed by Bonner’s captain, Paul Digby. Deployed in a defensive midfield role, Digby served as a near-sweeper, superbly protecting the visitors’ back line.

With the passing-home radar going awry and the pressing play dysfunction, Cambridge sensed an opportunity and Ironside troubled Howe’s full-backs with a mix of shrewd movement and a daring presence.

Even at this relatively early stage, Howe looked uncomfortable in the technical realm. While Trippier’s toned cameos probably reassured him, it became increasingly clear that, as good as the England right-back was undeniably, it certainly wasn’t the kind of debut he dreamed of when he finished. his £ 15million move. Atlético Madrid Friday.

Trippier said he enjoys “a challenge” and that by signing up to help correct the appreciable gap between Newcastle’s current struggles and the Saudi club’s new status as theoretically the richest in the world, the new Howe’s full-back certainly adopted one.

Normally, Trippier’s right-wing deliveries are excellent, but here they seemed to constantly hit a wall in the formidable form of Bonner’s commanding center-back Jubril Okedina and his fellow defenders.

On those inevitable occasions when Okedina and co were raped, the excellent Dimitar Mitov made some important saves, especially as, at the end of the first half, Newcastle had their best part of the game.

Indeed, the Cambridge goalkeeper performed acrobatic wonders to twice deny Jacob Murphy and then Saint-Maximin after the latter, although temporarily, began to confuse his scorers. The moment Mitov rocked Murphy’s volley on the bar will be remembered.

At the other end however, Ironside retained an ability to annoy Emil Krafth and Fabian Schär. Bonner claimed a seemingly legitimate penalty when Harvey Knibbs collapsed in the area after appearing to be pulled back by Matt Ritchie but, controversially, a VAR exam found no fouls.

Schär is often much better at creating than deconstructing and the Swiss defender momentarily thought he scored after tapping in the fallout from a Ritchie corner but was well offside.

Joe Ironside gives Cambridge the lead in the second half
Joe Ironside gives Cambridge the advantage in the second half. Photograph: Richard Lee / Shutterstock

Murphy, too, was denied an offside effort early in the second period, but it didn’t take long for Ironside to show the stunned home fans exactly how it should be done.

When Newcastle failed to clear a free ball, following Schär’s header from Adam May, Bonner’s key forward pounced on, pivoting sharply before whipping the ball past Martin Dubravka , helpless. The Newcastle goalkeeper injured himself in the process, playing in apparent pain.

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After an excessively long VAR check for possible offside, the goal was held and from that point on Cambridge shone, Bonner’s narrow setup resembling a sort of impassable yellow barrier for sure to hunt down. Howe’s nightmares.

The Newcastle manager looked haunted when Jack Lankester shot under Dubravka, but he had strayed slightly from offside and that was denied. No matter; Ironside had already done enough.


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