independent

Friday 18 April 2014

Ben Arfa injury blow as Magpies qualify

Newcastle 1
Maritimo 1

Maritimo substitute Fidelis ruined Newcastle's night as they limped rather than marched into the knockout stages of the Europa League.

The striker, who might even have snatched victory deep into stoppage-time, cancelled out Sylvain Marveaux's first Magpies goal 11 minutes from time and allowed Bordeaux to climb to the top of Group D by virtue of their 2-1 victory at Club Brugge.

Newcastle will now have to win in France on December 6 if they are to snatch back top spot in a game which will be a dead rubber in terms of qualification, but upon which much could rest.

A draw was little more than the visitors deserved on a night when Newcastle once again played in fits and starts in front of a meagre crowd of 21,632.

However, the result was not the only disappointment for Pardew, who saw the in-form Hatem Ben Arfa limp off with a hamstring injury and striker Papiss Cisse follow him down the tunnel shortly after half-time.

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