STEVEN Taylor claimed a dramatic late equaliser at Stamford Bridge – then insisted the days of Newcastle United fearing anyone are over.
For the second week running the defender was the club’s goalscoring hero, Taylor claiming a point from yesterday’s game against Chelsea with an injury-time header.
Taylor netted what turned out to be the winner on his previous outing against Birmingham City at St James’s Park.
And the 25-year-old had substitute Nile Ranger to thank for his second goal of an injury-hit campaign. The striker headed Joey Barton’s corner back across goal, and the game ended 2-2.
Taylor was shown a yellow card by referee Lee Mason after celebrating with Newcastle’s jubilant 1,500-strong following and his team-mates.
“We fully deserved the draw – it was unbelievable,” Taylor said.
“The ball’s gone in over my head, then I turned around and Nile’s rose above him well and headed it back across,
“It was just a flicked header in the corner – I was in the right place, at the time right time, I guess.
“When I saw it go in the back of the net, it was the best feeling ever. It meant so much when the lads celebrated the goal – I’ll take that yellow card!”
United had got off to the worst possible start, Branislav Ivanovic giving Chelsea a second-minute lead, but Alan Pardew’s side dug in and fought back, and after Ryan Taylor’s 10th-minute free-kick was deflected past Petr Cech by Jonas Gutierrez.
Alex scored a second seven minutes from time, but Taylor ensured a youthful Newcastle got a deserved point.
Taylor went on: “They scored early on, but we said to ourselves ‘just get on with it, and keep passing it’. We weren’t fazed by who they were – they were just names.
“Once we got the goal, we were in the game all the time. For me, it was definitely a draw.
“The lads deserved it for the performance all the way through, and the commitment of players like Ryan and Fergie (Shane Ferguson), who came in and didn’t look out of place one bit.
“Everyone put a good shift in and won their tackles. I thought we set our stall out. We didn’t go there to defend, like some teams.
“We stuck to our gameplan, and the lads fully deserved it. It was a great team performance.
“We kept at it, and dealt with what they threw at us. We dealt with the crosses. Me and Colo (Fabricio Coloccini) had a lot to do in the second half, but we were fine with what they threw at us.
“Shola (Ameobi) put a shift in and made it hard for John Terry at back, and Joey was fantastic with Ryan.”
Chelsea: Cech, Ivanovic, Alex, Terry, Cole, Ramires (Malouda 64), McEachran (Essien 64), Lampard, Anelka, Benayoun (Drogba 64), Torres. Subs not used: Turnbull, David Luiz, Mikel, Ferreira. Booked: Terry, Ramires, Lampard, Ivanovic.
Newcastle: Krul, Simpson, S Taylor, Coloccini, Enrique, Gutierrez (Ranger 76), Barton, R Taylor, Ferguson (LuaLua 69), Shola Ameobi, Lovenkrands (Sammy Ameobi 82). Subs not used: Soderberg, Smith, Tavernier, Kuqi. Booked: Simpson, Enrique.
Att: 41,739. Ref: Lee Mason (Lancashire).