Stoke City 1 Newcastle Utd 0: Angry fans call for Pardew to be sacked

FREAK GOAL ... Erik Pieters celebrates his strike.
FREAK GOAL ... Erik Pieters celebrates his strike.
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NEWCASTLE United fans chanted for Alan Pardew to be sacked at the Britannia Stadium.

Supporters turned on the club’s under-pressure manager during this afternoon’s 1-0 Premier League defeat to Stoke City.

They chanted “We want Pardew out” during the game, which was decided by a Erik Pieters’s first goal for six years.

Pardew, sat next to Newcastle’s new managing director Lee Charnley in the Britannia Stadium’s directors’ box, was serving the penultimate game of a seven-match ban.

The Stoke defender beat his Dutch countryman and close friend Tim Krul with a misdirected cross.

Misfiring United, lying ninth in the table, are now just three points ahead of 10th-placed Stoke.

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Pardew made four changes and adopted a three-man defence, with Krul, Shola Ameobi, Paul Dummett and Steven Taylor returning to his starting XI.

The game kicked off at 3.07pm to mark the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy, and was preceded by a minute’s silence in remembrance of the 96 people who lost their lives.

Stoke striker Peter Crouch crashed an early header against the post.

And United midfielder Dan Gosling put an 11th-minute chance at the other end on to the roof of the net after Ameobi headed a Vurnon Anita cross down to him.

Papiss Demba Cisse had a strong penalty claim in the 26th minute. The Newcastle striker was held back in the box by Stoke defender Geoff Cameron, but referee Mike Jones waved play on.

Visiting captain Fabricio Coloccini diverted a Steven Nzonzi shot over Krul’s goal, but clearcut chances were few and far between before the break.

United’s frustrated fans chanted against Pardew en masse for the first time this season as their team struggled to make headway.

Stoke’s 42nd-minute goal had an element of fortune to it.

One-time Newcastle target Pieters broke up the left and his misdirected cross sailed over a despairing Krul and into the top right-hand corner.

There was a chant for substitute Hatem Ben Arfa to be introduced in the second half as United’s players headed towards the tunnel at the break.

Crouch headed over the bar after the restart, and Taylor left the field with an injury in the 61st minute. He was replaced by Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa.

Mike Williamson, still looking for his first Newcastle goal on what was his 132nd appearance for the club, had a shot blocked.

Pardew threw on Ben Arfa and teenage striker Adam Armstrong in the 73rd minute, and the pair got a raucous reception from the away end as they ran on to the field.

Ben Arfa suffered what looked to be a dead leg soon after coming on, but the forward was able to continue after treatment.

But United couldn’t conjure up a goal, with Pieters’s strike condemning them to a fourth consecutive defeat.

Newcastle have now failed to score in 12 of their last 16 games.

Twitter: @milesstarforth

STOKE CITY: Begovic; Cameron, Shawcross, Wilson, Pieters; Ireland (Adam, 66), Nzonzi, Whelan, Arnautovic; Odemwingie; Crouch. Subs: Sorensen; Muniesa, Palacios, Walters, Guidetti, Wilkinson.

NEWCASTLE UNITED: Krul; S Taylor (Yanga-Mbiwa, 61), Williamson, Coloccini; Anita, Gosling (Ben Arfa, 73), Tiote, Gouffran, Dummett; Shola Ameobi, Cisse (Armstrong, 73). Subs: Elliot, Haidara, Bigirimana, de Jong.

Goals: Pieters 42

Bookings: Coloccini 75, Pieters 87

Referee: Mike Jones (Chester)