Magpies modern classics – Newcastle 3-2 Barcelona.

Posted on May 23rd, 2010 | 138 Comments |

Part four of my look at some of the best games from the modern history of Newcastle United features a Champions League game from September 1997, just before Kenny Dalglish managed to sell off the last of the creative players we had, and yes that was a dig!

It was a match that will live long in the memory of many a Newcastle fan, as arguably the best team in Europe were sent packing back to Spain after losing 3-2 against a side that nobody thought has a chance of winning.

That Barcelona team had some world-class players in it, with the likes of Luis Figo, Rivaldo, Luis Enrique all in their prime. It didn’t matter though, and it now sits up there around some of the greatest matches of our entire history, and probably rates quite highly with a certain Faustino Asprilla in all fairness.

It was the controversial Colombian who gave us the lead from the penalty spot after being brought down by the Barcelona ‘keeper, who I think was Ruud Hesp. It didn’t matter though as Tino tucked the penalty into the corner of the Gallowgate end net.

Futher elation followed early in the second-half as Keith Gillespie broke down the right before releasing a pinpoint cross for Asprilla to head home and make it 2-0. If that wasn’t enough, in a near identical move the same pair combined again, with the same result, Asprilla hitting the back of the net to make it 3-0 and stake his claim for the match ball.

In true Newcastle style the last twenty minutes were to be a nervy affair as Luis Enrique managed to sramble one back for the Catalan giants before Luis Figo shot from outside the area to reduce the defecit to just one goal and make the score 3-2 on the night.

That is how the score stayed, although in fairness there could have been more goals to be had for both sides. A truly memorable night. Good times!

NUFCBlog Author: toonsy toonsy has written 643 articles on this blog.

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138 Responses

  1. I can remember this like it was lastweek, Keith Gillespie tore them apart and old rubber legs himself had one of his best games in the shirt :)

  2. sirjasontoon says:
    May 23, 2010 at 7:31 pm

    Where’s that Morale office when you need him eh?

    He’s just watched it and is now trying to pick himself up :lol:

  3. Aye lads, but remember there are newer fans that haven’t experienced these nights. These are as much for them as they are for us to look back upon, wonder where it all went wrong and cry :(

  4. SJT – Did you mean to configure your smilies to look like they were getting it on? You used the wrong command, it should have been:


  5. Wow! I really miss those moments in the Champions League. Hope we get there again in a couple of years.

  6. Baro I think a couple of years might be stretching it a bit, at the rate we’re going im hopeing my wee lad will get to see it ;)

  7. Just been looking at ideas for my next one of these. Found the Feyenoord match but the sound is pretty shite so wont use it :(

    Sound like it is being commentated using the same technology as 1986 World Cup :lol:

  8. I won’t have a word said against the ’80s,They’re the new ’60’s you know!! ;-)

  9. toonsy says:
    May 23, 2010 at 7:36 pm

    “Aye lads, but remember there are newer fans that haven’t experienced these nights. These are as much for them as they are for us to look back upon, wonder where it all went wrong and cry”

    I did, and it was just emptiness and disappointment. We won nothing, we were just lovable losers who always showed feet of clay at the crucial moment because we had the wrong mindset. I miss little about those times because I was always braced for failure at the last hurdle due to mental weakness.

  10. Aye, know what your saying Worky. Like the FA Cup finals in 98 and 99 I just knew we wouldn’t turn up for them despite hoping so hard that we would :(

  11. 99 was the worse for me,broke my ankle the night before but wouldn’t go to the hospital incase they had to operate or keep me in.Hobbled onto the coach in agony,I can remember thinking all the way down that I’m probably putting myself through this for nothing,how right I was.Following day spent in the hospital,cracking weekend I don’t think.

  12. toonsy says:
    May 23, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    “Aye, know what your saying Worky. Like the FA Cup finals in 98 and 99 I just knew we wouldn’t turn up for them despite hoping so hard that we would”

    Football is a mindgame.

  13. I wasn’t ganna say owt and just leave ya on ya own ;-)
    maybe their all sick of going around in circles about finances and transfers……….It’s not often I bite mind.

  14. Im still here Toonsy playing with my pencils and crayons :)
    I agree with Worky and have to admit I allways braced myself for defeat ever sence we threw away that 12 point lead. I can remember the FA cups clearly thinking before the game what the empty feeling was going to be like after the match was over.

  15. I think it was the same in Marseille Worky,I think they were defeated before the ball was kicked.

  16. Worky is doing his best to coax them out with that football is a mind game comment.

    *Waits for the ‘utter bollocks better players always beat inferior players’ argument*

    :D :D

  17. The Toon’s 3-2 win against Barcelona was in my opinion one of the greatest nights in Newcastle football history, I’ll never forget it. The way Gillespie skinned the full back, and Tino’s thumping headers, just magic !

  18. “Sound like it is being commentated using the same technology as 1986 World Cup”

    I used to love the coverage of the South American World cups in the old days. Even the European games could sound as if they were coming from a neighbouring galaxy.

    Now we get to watch us get our ars*s kicked in widescreen HD 3D b*llocks!

    Everything nowadays just seems so instant and effortless. Not nearly as important.

    I know. I’m a moany old git. I’ll get me coat :)

  19. OOOooooo oooo oooooo. Get to go to a oub and watch Newcastle in 3d next season at some point :D

  20. When I started going to the football in ’80 I wasn’t usually let down ‘cos I just didn’t have the expectation then.I went for the craic and the atmosphere.As long as all the players gave 100% I was reasonably happy………though looking back I wonder how I survived some of the away games.

  21. toonsy says:
    May 23, 2010 at 8:51 pm

    “Worky is doing his best to coax them out with that football is a mind game comment.”

    No I’m not, Toonsy. Football really is a mindgame.

    “*Waits for the ‘utter bollocks better players always beat inferior players’ argument*”

    Real Madrid: Great players, poor mentality.

  22. Toonsy I think its a bit about haveing the winning mentality, a bit like Best when he gets his 1st goal he should go onwards and upwards same as the Toon when we win the prem the 1st time it will be easier the 2nd and 3rd times :)

  23. Dave – Aye I agree. And lay off that wacky backy ;)

    Worky, what I meant was that you can expect the counter argument to your comment form somewhere, possibly Stuart :lol:

  24. Rich – One of the strangest away experiences I have had was only this season in fact. Hillsborough.

    Real eery when you watched what happened there on telly, looked at the reports and diagrams of how it happened. Then to go there and see nothing has changed with the entrances and stuff gave me a feeling that I have never had before. Walking through the tunnel was like slow motion, then to find my seat was right at the front of what would have been pen 3. Real real eery feeling like.

  25. Toonsy > Dave – Aye I agree. And lay off that wacky backy

    I haven’t touched it since I gave up a few months ago :) But sometimes on this blog makes me think of taking it up again :lol: .
    Re poor mentality I think Jose Mourinho teams allways have the winning mentality

  26. I can imagine mate,last time I was there was about 83ish think we got beat 4-2. It was bad then too.Old Trafford was the worse for me crush wise when they humped us 5 nowt and everyone was trying to leave after the match,the tunnels went underneath the stand but the gates were shut.So everyone was piling off the terraces eventually the weight of everyone made the doors fly open but then the coppers came in with their horses and batons.happy days

  27. What you trying to say, toonsy?

    Real Madrid have won nothing because they have a new manager every few months! How can they expect all the new players that they keep buying to gel, with a new manager every week?

  28. Rich – Aye, Anfield was a bit like that. Coppers a bit too handy with their batons. Arseholes.

  29. My best awayday atmosphere wise when we were div2 and got Liverpool in the cup,13000 geordies singing,nowt from the kop.amazing apart from getting humped 4 nowt

  30. Stu – It’s Worky you need to make your point to. I was just pointing out that there will be a counter argument to it.

    On the flipside though, I agree with both points really. Their team cant settle, likes ours couldn’t last season, but I also think they lack the mentality of a Barcelona.

  31. Stuart79 says:
    May 23, 2010 at 9:13 pm

    “Real Madrid have won nothing because they have a new manager every few months! How can they expect all the new players that they keep buying to gel, with a new manager every week?”

    It’s good to see that you are coming around to my way of thinking at last, Stuart.

  32. Well if you are saying a team that`s supposedly tight in the dressing room and has a certain cohesive attitude, will beat teams with top quality players then perhaps you should look at how the EPL finished and for that matter the championship.
    Being we have a crap team, yes it`s a crap team compared to the one we just watched also Sir Bobby`s teams.
    Too good for the fizzy but will struggle in the PL.
    Unless we bring in some quality re- inforcements we will be lucky to be a halfway club.
    Of course nine times out of ten talented teams will beat mediocrities, no matter how much they like each other, moronic to believe anything else.

  33. Workyticket says:
    May 23, 2010 at 9:20 pm

    I wouldn’t go that far, Worky.

  34. “Thus it is that in war the victorious strategist only seeks battle after the victory has been won, whereas he who is destined to defeat first fights and afterwards looks for victory.” Sun Tzu.

  35. It`s not an easy task for any manager, to control the collective ego`s of a Real Madrid side.
    Seemingly the problems arise from the fact the club brings in players by the group and quickly gets rid of certain players who don`t fit immediately.
    There appears to be a demand for instant success there.
    While at other successful clubs it`s replace those either getting long in the tooth or not cutting it anymore.
    In the case of managers especially, similar to us they seldom have the patience to let a new manager build the side he wants.
    Instead going out and collecting a bunch of galacticos
    which the manager has to attempt to mold into a cohesive side, does`nt always work unfortunately.
    But on saying that how many points did they finish behind Barca ?

  36. Just had a call from Morale Officer and I am pleased to announce that that our Love and togetherness is going to take the premiership by storm.

    Forget Pace,craft,skill….all we need is Love.

    We are going places Lads :roll:

  37. He alone, who owns the youth, gains the future.
    Adolf Hitler

    Maybe Big Mick has a point. :lol:

  38. If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.
    Adolf Hitler

    Are you sure MA does not have German ancestry :)

    Jonas needs to inflict his hairstyle on the rest of the team and get a fringe cut into it Toonsy.

    Flowery Puma shirts to Follow.

  39. Soh! seventy-seventy temperature and humidity, not great but liveable.
    Guess what, it`s Amstel time !

  40. “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”

    Think that is quite fitting actually :)

  41. Chuck – I reckon it hasn’t been gar off that over here temperature wise today.

    Can’t stand hot weather :(

  42. sirjasontoon says:
    May 23, 2010 at 9:51 pm

    “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.
    Adolf Hitler”

    That was Josef Goebbels, Jason. Though it is often mis-attributed to Hitler by non historians on the Internet.

  43. danny – Nobody knows mate. At the current moment we are still under contract with Adidas. I have heard August 5th but don’t quote me on it.

  44. Yes toonsy
    The brighter ones are beginning to see the light.
    “Chuckism” is making inroads, first NUFC then who knows……

  45. Where can I get my hands on a Newcastle United Champions 2009 – 2010 flag ?

  46. Good quote Worky all the same.
    I am not a historian by any stretch of the imagination but do enjoy real history,false flags etc.

    Both Adolf and Goreballs would get a team to deliver the goods-Or Else !!

  47. workyticket says:
    May 23, 2010 at 10:01 pm

    “Goebbels is a very interesting man to study.”

    Sounds like a bit of a turkey to me.

  48. Had a few Kronenbourgs Morale Officer…my anger has ceased and I am at one with the universe once more.

    I love you brother x

  49. Wor Tino was something special like. I remember thinking to myself that i’d never seen him header a ball before then and then he got two in a hattrick against Barca. I was only 10 at the time but i remember everyone around me going absolutly mental and me just trying to stand on my seat to jump around. Great times.

  50. Toonsy and richietoon…thanks lads, I’m on the case. One of them flags will look good on my new flag pole in the back garden. Have to be careful with the England flag though !!

  51. Tried to get a link for you Munich, but it’s one of those e-brichure things and I couldn’t be arsed to install the plug-in it needs.

  52. sirjasontoon says:
    May 23, 2010 at 10:05 pm

    “Both Adolf and Goreballs would get a team to deliver the goods-Or Else !!”

    Hitler didn’t get the team to produce the goods at Stalingrad, Jason. He was always destined to lose because of his psychology.

  53. I remember the game so well, I was in Menorca, was my first holiday abroad (at the age of 22, late starter ha ha!) the build up to the game was al I could think about all day. I sat in the bar of the complex place where we stayed with a Newcastle shirt on and another that was put over the chair in fron of the tv. All the English in there were supporting us. A Spanish waiter started going wild at the end of the game and got into a fight with one of the English.

    The next day when I was out and about, some Spanish bloke was talking to his wife, could have been saying anything, but I was quite convinced he said Tino lept like a salmon. Only thought that as he pushed his arm n the air and looked like he was heading a ball. Of course he was probs talking about the washing, but I dont speak spanish apart from asking for a beer and I was still so excited

  54. Tell your neighbours to Go Screw themselves Munich Mag-Take no prisoners…I have a life size Klinsman Doll in my Back Garden that I talk to when I am lonely.

  55. “I have a life size Klinsman Doll in my Back Garden that I talk to when I am lonely.”


    Is that what they call it nowadays? ;)

  56. Well Errrrrr Toonsy Bit of a “Chin Wag” or something…shhhhhhhhh
    I bought him a spurs kit off ebay and we watch videos of him diving like dying swan on you tube.

    Me and Jürgen Love this One

  57. No…the Doll has no Feet Morale Officer…..that’s why I got it so cheap…just dug two small trenches with my dads trowel…..couldn’t afford the vintage boots (well pricey) so just chopped his feet off and bedded him in…looks good though and keeps the seagulls off the rhubarb.

  58. When I bought him he had bad toenail’s so it was best to just remove the feet…price of curanail these days is just daylight robbery.

  59. Was lucky that day because the challenge was that hard he thought he would end up on a spit with the right corner flag…..sehr glücklicher Junge (very lucky boy) :)

  60. Just Spoke to My Klinsman doll…this was his response:
    glücklich lebendig sein


  61. Not sure what this meant..but he had a weird glint in his eyes….

    Analverkehr ist groß

    Don’t quote me on it though lads..he has had a few beers.

  62. wat game was it were tino grabbed the corner flag n stuck his shirt on it? could have sworn it was the barca game ?

  63. It’s when he says to you ‘schleck meine pimmel’ that you want to worry SJT!!!!

  64. No johnny, it was a eufa cup match, can’t remember who it was against, but definatly wasn’t against barca.

  65. Aye Worky..but he was on Fire when he he decided to burn the Reichstag building :)

    Twisted Fire Vater :)

  66. Feeling like a little sunflower in the Breeze Morale Officer….me – and the Tooniverse are now mystically linked – Peace – Love- Waddle Mullets….and Jurgen has a big Smile on his face in the Garden.

  67. I am the Fire Vater…German Remix-Shouldn’t laugh at me own Gags..just did sorry lads :(

  68. I was only 10 when this match was on but god I wish I supported the toon a bit more in them days. I partly blame my dad for not getting me into it even though he always watched the toon since the 60’s. Nevermind, so far all my memories are of crap managers and decline, until this season. ;)

  69. k mo cheers. well im hoping that if most the players manage the step up ;) nd we avoid any serious injuries, then we could sit top half of table.
    if we struggle then we struggle, but with bpool,wba,wolves,stoke…we should be able to clear this pack. the bookies agree n all, so whilst im not jumping for joy im fairly confident of the squads capabilities.
    however with some shroud signings in summer i reckon top 10-12.
    heres hoping anyway, nd its not totally unrealistic iether

  70. All Games I wouldn’t bet on blackpool,wba,wolves,stoke
    Wolves would certainly be a test they plan to invest-Stoke will Roll us over-Blackpool will be up for it – WBA we beat them all the time don’t we?

  71. how about a discussion on the definition of ‘capital outlay’ Toonsy? ;-)

  72. morning lads…
    richietoon, sirjasontoon @99 & 101 ….good German lads, but be careful it could get you into trouble ! nursing sore extremities…!

  73. toonsy says:
    May 24, 2010 at 8:03 am

    Not much in way of news so far. Scrabbling round a bit again

    There’s two reason’s for that, toonsy.

    We don’t have a pot to p1ss in so why would any agent leak a bit of info to the papers and the club have said there will be no talking about transfers or no transfers as I see it.

  74. I have two bits, which I could cobble together as one, but I need to find out some more info on them first :(

    And trying to scour the internet for goings on in deepest Bosnia is fecking hard work :(

  75. looks like wor old mate Emre missed out on the Turkish championship at the last minute..Fenerbache battered Trabzonspor at home, had about 478 shots on goal but still only managed a 1-1 draw. Fener fans celebrated by trying to burn down their own stadium…mental… must admit I used to like Emre, had a wonderful left foot. Pity he didn’t have a right one though !

  76. Aye Hitman, according to KK met the HSV chairman for some scran in a Hamburg Restaurant last night.
    KK 90 games and 32 goals for HSV..

  77. Hughton is looking to strengthen his squad this summer and is understood to be interested in bringing in West Bromwich Albion’s 23-year-old Congo international midfielder Youssouf Mulumbu.

  78. Hmm, sounds dodge like Hitman. why would West Brom sell a player when they are trying to stay up themselves?

  79. Howay man spewey – your new found bum chum won’t be impressed that you’re resorting to personal insults!

  80. Great memmories that i know w ill some day be repeated the question is whether or not i will still be alive to see it.

  81. I remember this game like it was yesterday – unfortunately i never got to see it live…

    I was a student in Manchester at the time and the Granada ITV region chose to show the Mancs instead so I had to resort to the radio on my old Sony Walkman – I got a fair few funny looks as I jumped up and down screaming when nowt was happening at the ManU game.

  82. Love’s a bit thin on the ground round here MO – if you’re looking for bags of pish and moan you’re in luck tho :)

  83. I savor, lead to I found exactly what I used to be looking for. You’ve ended my four day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a nice day. Bye