Contrary to most people’s take on the Stoke v Newcastle match, the BBC report that Magpies manager Sam Allardyce thought his team controlled the game and were unfortunate not to land the victory. The Potters had two or three genuine goalscoring opportunities, as well as a legitimate penalty claim turned down, yet it’s amazing what black-and-white tinted spectacles can do for you.
“The rain made life awkward, but we controlled the game well and just couldn’t find the goal.
“I’m disappointed over the 90 minutes not to have won but it’s a very good draw and we will try to finish the job at St James’ Park.
“We dealt with their size and strength very well and but for 15 minutes they didn’t cause us too many problems.
“Overall it was a satisfying performance. We should have broken them down better than we did, but still had many chances to win it.”
Which chances would they be then? The several skewed-over-the-bar shots from Nicky Butt which didn’t exactly trouble the keeper? Or the goalmouth melee where Michael Owen would have needed to be 6ft 8in to direct the ball into the net? It was get out of jail free for Allardyce last night and nobody should believe otherwise, unless you are Big Sam or his wife… who we will call Big Betty.