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02nd Dec 2016

Newcastle fans fuming as ref leaves them down to nine men by half-time

Left them with an uphill task.

Tom Victor

Referee Steve Martin might share his name with an iconic comedian, but Newcastle United fans saw nothing funny about his performance at the City Ground.

Martin handed opponents Nottingham Forest two first-half penalties and sent off two Magpies players before the first 45 minutes were up.

Jonjo Shelvey saw red for a clash with Henri Lansbury just after the half-hour mark, but Karl Darlow saved Nicklas Bendtner’s spot-kick and Newcastle took the lead 10-or-so minutes later through Matt Ritchie.

Martin wasn’t done, though, and there was still time before the break to brandish the red card again, with Paul Dummett the recipient.

But former Forest goalkeeper Darlow wasn’t going to be beaten that easily and saved again, this time from Bendtner’s fellow ex-Arsenal man Lansbury.

And things got worse after half-time, when the referee ignored handball claims as Bendtner did finally equalise for the hosts.

To say the Toon Army weren’t pleased with Martin’s first-half display would be a massive understatement – these tweets should give you an idea of the sentiment.

And of course some jokingly suggested Martin’s allegiances might lie elsewhere in the North East.


To make matters worse for the Magpies, Forest snatched a late win as Jamaal Lascelles – who also joined Newcastle from the Nottingham club – turned into his own net with less than five minutes to go.

The defeat means Newcastle could be knocked off the top of the Championship table this weekend if second-placed Brighton and Hove Albion win at Cardiff City on Saturday afternoon.

Catch up with this week’s episode of Football Friday Live