Black Cats get better of Magpies

Joey Barton was spat at and pelted with missiles as Sunderland ended their 28-year wait for a home victory over Newcastle.

Newcastle United's Joey Barton reacts to the Sunderland fans after he had a coin thrown at him while he warmed up.
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Joey Barton was spat at and pelted with missiles as Sunderland ended their 28-year wait for a home victory over Newcastle. The controversial midfielder was targeted by home fans as he warmed up on the sidelines during the second half of a pulsating Wear-Tyne derby. Barton eventually arrived on the pitch as an 84th-minute replacement for Nicky Butt but, by that point, the drama had already unfolded. Kieran Richardson was the hero when, a week after twice being denied with free-kicks at Fulham, he smashed home a stunning winner from a similar position with 15 minutes remaining. Djibril Cisse had earlier given the home side a 20th-minute lead, although that was cancelled out by Shola Ameobi within 10 minutes. Ameobi had not scored in two years before Monday's draw with Manchester City. The Sunderland substitute Kenwyne Jones headed just over and Cisse hit the post as the home side threatened to win more comfortably in front of a passionate sell-out crowd of 47,936. The teams entered the arena on an afternoon when anti-racism campaigners were stressing the message 'One game, one community', although in another sense, the game represented a battle between two communities with intense local pride at stake. In a first half of few chances, Steven Taylor had to take the ball off Dean Whitehead's toe as he prepared to shoot, and was then grateful to see Cisse wrong-footed by his miskick as he attempted to clear El-Hadji Diouf's cross. However, with Sunderland in the ascendancy, the opening goal arrived with 20 minutes gone when Steed Malbranque, whose link up with fullback Pascal Chimbonda down the right caused all sorts of problems for the Magpies, drilled the ball across goal for Cisse to slide in and divert it past Shay Given. But Newcastle gradually worked their way back into the game. The Magpies man of the moment Ameobi got his side back on level terms, rising unopposed to power a 30th-minute header past the Black Cats' goalkeeper Marton Fulop, earning a rare start in place of the injured Craig Gordon. If anything, the visitors held the upper hand as the half drew to a close and Fulop, who had looked less than certain under a series of high balls, made a solid 43rd-minute save from Damien Duff after he had exchanged passes with Obafemi Martins and powered his way into the box. With Duff and Geremi having switched wings at the break in an effort to curb Chimbonda's influence, the Magpies looked to have a better balance, although they were presented with a different problem with 57 minutes gone. It was then that Roy Keane decided that the time was right to introduce Jones as a replacement, although it was Ameobi who almost gave his side the lead seconds later. Martins broke from halfway and slid the ball into his strike partner's path but, after cutting inside, he sent his left-footed shot high over the bar. After Barton's run-in with the home fans, Given had to block Cisse's scuffed shot and then watch Richardson's volley fly wide as Sunderland responded. But the midfielder finally got his goal with 15 minutes remaining when, after Butt had tripped Diouf on the edge of the box, he smashed the resulting free-kick into the top corner. Jones might have sealed the win two minutes later with a header which flew agonisingly over the bar, and Cisse smashed a long-range shot against the post, but despite a late flurry from the visitors, the points were safe.

*PA Sport