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Premier League

  • 1 February 2012
  • • 20:00
  • • Ewood Park, Blackburn, Lancashire
  • Referee: P. Dowd
  • • Attendance: 20817
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Blackburn 0-2 Newcastle: Dann own goal and late Obertan strike move Magpies into fifth

Blackburn 0-2 Newcastle: Dann own goal and late Obertan strike move Magpies into fifth

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Visitors keep their Europa League qualification hopes alive thanks to goals at the start and end of the match to condemn the hosts to a defeat in their quest for safety

Newcastle’s hopes of securing a Europa League spot were boosted thanks to an early Scott Dann own goal and late Gabriel Obertan strike to secure a 2-0 win away to Blackburn and move them up to fifth spot.

Blackburn stay in the relegation zone after squandering a number of presentable chances against a resilient Magpies outfit who showed strength to bounce back from their weekend loss to Brighton in the FA Cup.

Rovers boss Steve Kean made just the one change from the side which managed an impressive 1-1 draw away to Everton in their last Premier League match with Anthony Modeste making his first start for the club in place of the injured David Goodwillie.

As for the visitors, Magpies manager Alan Pardew brought in two fresh faces from the team which lost to the Championship side with influential centre-back Fabricio Coloccini replacing James Perch and Ryan Taylor coming in for the suspended Yohan Cabaye.

The match started in a sluggish fashion with both sides struggling to get a hold of the game in the opening 10 minutes. However, the deadlock was broken in the 12th minute of the clash through a moment of misfortune for the Blackburn defence.

The recalled Taylor let fly with a speculative effort from 20 yards out which was heading well wide of Blackburn’s goal until it took a wicked deflection off Dann’s boot and past the hapless Paul Robinson.

The home side almost hit back straight away when Gael Givet headed a Morten Gamst Perdersen corner towards goal only to see his effort cleared off the line by the well placed Danny Simpson.

Blackburn continued to push for an equaliser and came close again just after the mid-way point in the first half when the lively Modeste’s effort was well blocked by Coloccini.

Magpies frontman Leon Best almost found the back of the net at the wrong end just over five minutes before half-time when he rose to clear Pedersen’s corner only to see it thunder against his own cross-bar.

Kean’s side had the perfect opportunity to equalise just before the interval after referee Phil Dowd awarded them a controversial penalty after Danny Simpson’s challenged Modeste inside the area.

Experienced playmaker Dunn stepped up to take the resulting spot-kick but saw his effort superbly saved by the imposing figure of Tim Krul who dived to stop the ball going into the Newcastle net.

The second-half started in an open fashion as both sides continued to press for the second and decisive goal of the game but failed to make the most of some promising positions.

On-loan Bordeaux man Modeste continued to pose problems for Newcastle’s backline but struggled to make the most of the half chances which came his way.

The visitors' manger Pardew would have been happy with the effort his side put in as the game progressed as they battled to hold onto their early lead against their fresher opponents.

Blackburn pushed for a vital equaliser with second-half substitute Mauro Formica going close late on only to fire his close-range effort into the side netting, but were punished late on when former Manchester United winger Obertan exposed the gaps in the hosts' defence to smartly slot home and complete the win

The result leaves Blackburn languishing in the relegation zone while the three points for Newcastle see them rise up to fifth spot.

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