The second-half starts without further changes from both side. With the mackems do the kick-off at restart. They immediately work on as Leadbitter slipped a low pass to the unmarked Wallace. He works an angle wide of Milner before standing one up at the far post for Jones to attack, the striker gets his header away but Harper is able to save to his left.
Newcastle tries to push ahead with Viduka opens up the hosts’ defence, the Aussie striker crosses from the by-line with Owen arriving in the six-yard area but it’s too high for the Toon striker and the ball skids away to safety.
And not long after that, Big Sam will be heading out to his own funeral sooner or later when the mackems scores. It was Faye’s lost possession on halfway to allowing Jones chasing down the loose ball, Rozehnal races across the field to slide and conceded a corner. The short corner worked and Leadbitter delivers to the far post where Danny Higginbottam has ghosted to head beyond Harper in 52 minutes.
The game suddenly change into an end-to-end stuff. Newcastle have a penalty shout waved away when Milner tangles with Harte as he tried to force his way into the penalty area from Emre’s pass. Owen also have his falshing header clears the crossbar from Barton’s pass.
In 61 minutes, Abdoulaye Faye is injured and is replaced by Habib Beye, to guard the Magpies right back while Steven Taylor moved into the center with Rozehnal.
Not very long after, from the midfield Emre works the ball wide for James Milner who did a neat exchange passes with Joey Barton on the left. Milner then cuts infield before seeing his low cross evade everyone inside the area and find its way into the net via the far post – it’s Milner 2nd of the season and sparks mass celebration among the Toon Army behind the goal.
Mike Ashley celebrating the goal together with 3,000 more Geordies faithfull behind the goal. He is really enjoying the goal after looking heavily depressed when we are a goal behind.
The homeside responses by adding the third striker u front with Anthony Stokes coming in to replace Ross Wallace.
Newcastle now increasing their attacking with Michaels Owen once again have his numbers of opportunity this afternoon to put the Magpies ahead.
He does superbly to pluck the long ball forward from Harper in the air and runs at a beckpedalling McShane, he then works to create an angle for a shot but his left-footed strike lacks of power and Gordon saves low to his right.
Owen later being replaced by Obafemi Martins and the armband was given to Smith, while Geremi in to replace the looks tired Emre, with 3 minutes left on the clock. The game has 4 minutes of injury time added on.
Viduka has been working hard all afternoon with his strength. In 88 minutes he works an opening for Milner on the right, he snatches at the effort and the ball whistles wide when really he should’ve showed a little more composure as what he did to the equalizing goal.
In the end, it was all square for the result of the afternoon. Big Sam is saved by James Milner, and he should be very gratefull for that.
Sunderland AFC: Craig Gordon, Nyron Nosworthy (Danny Collins 24″), Ian Harte, Danny Higginbottom, Paul McShane, Grant Leadbitter, Ross Wallace (Anthony Stokes 73″), Dickson Etuhu, Carlos Edwards, Michael Chopra, Kenwyne Jones
Subs: Liam Miller, Darren Ward, David Connolly
Newcastle United FC: Steve Harper, Steven Taylor, Charles N’Zogbia, Abdoulaye Faye (Habib Beye 61″), David Rozehnal, James Milner, Alan Smith, Emre (Geremi 87″), Joey Barton, Michael Owen (Oba Martins 83″), Mark Viduka
Subs: Jose Enrique, Fraser Forster
Referee: M Atkinson