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Summary

  1. Newcastle have only lost once at home in Premier League under Rafael Benitez
  2. Palace have lost last six away matches, conceding 18 goals and scoring none

Live Reporting

By Alex Bysouth

All times stated are UK

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FULL-TIME

Newcastle 1-0 Crystal Palace

And that's it! Newcastle hold on for the win.

Not a classic, but the hosts will definitely take that.

Newcastle players celebrate
PA

Newcastle 1-0 Crystal Palace

Newcastle are happy to run this one down now.

Rafa Benitez will take the points and run from a match in which his side have probably been second best.

Newcastle 1-0 Crystal Palace

Well, Newcastle have the ball in the corner and win a throw. Looking bleak for Roy Hodgson's Crystal Palace now.

Newcastle 1-0 Crystal Palace

Now we've got a finish on. Palace flooding forward looking to level.

GOAL - Newcastle 1-0 Crystal Palace

Mikel Merino (85 mins)

Newcastle get the breakthrough! And it's the substitute, a great header from Mikel Merino as rises highest in the box to guide Matt Ritchie's corner into the roof of the net.

Merino scores for Newcastle
Reuters

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Roy Hodgson is waving his side forward. I reckon he would take a point right now.

It's Newcastle who get a corner though as a long ball forward ricochets around the box and comes off a Palace defender.

The visitors clear. And Andros Townsend goes skipping down field on the break instead.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Well, well, well. Ruben Loftus-Cheek makes his way into the box and pulls a shot across goal that Patrick van Aanholt can't quite reach as he slides in at the back post.

That was Gazza against Germany in Euro 96 all over! Almost...

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Better from the hosts. They're putting Crystal Palace under a spot of pressure now and Christian Atsu's fierce shot is taken in the face by Scott Dann. Ouchy!

SUBSTITUTION

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

It's Ruben Loftus-Cheek on Wilfried Zaha.

A little surprised by that one? Crystal Palace looking to shut up shop and settle for the point?

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Newcastle are now starting to threaten.

A second save to make for Julian Speroni in a matter of minutes, as Jonjo Shelvey unleashes a swerving effort on goal.

The Palace keeper pats it away with his forearm. Good strike, decent save.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

It's windy. Is that Storm Brian arriving on Tyneside?

It's not doing the Newcastle attack any favours, although Mo Diame's arrival brings a shot on target from the hosts.

A good turn and curling effort from the midfielder, but an easy save for Julian Speroni.

YELLOW CARD

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Andros Townsend looks to whip one, but he curls a left-footed effort over from just inside the box after cutting inside.

Promising from Crystal Palace, just not very precise.

Now Joselu is showing his frustration. He chops down Yohan Cabaye and gets his name taken by Stuart Attwell.

Andros Townsend of Crystal Palace
Reuters

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Christian Atsu gets the chance to stretch his legs for the first time in a while, Joel Ward does well to stick with the diminutive winger.

Matt Ritchie then can't reach a forward pass but it almost rolls into the path of Joselu. The forward can't react quick enough - he's feeding off scraps.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

So this is Wilfried Zaha and Andros Townsend's touch map. They are playing as Palace's front two, but there's very little activity down the middle for the visitors...

.
Opta

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Now my girlfriend will probably tell you I'm not very observant, but I'm pretty sure Jonjo Shelvey has changed his shirt from short sleeves to a long-sleeved number at the break.

Jonjo Shelvey of Newcastle
Reuters

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

St James' Park is growing restless.

You can't blame the home fans, Newcastle have shown very little going forward today.

SUBSTITUTION

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Rafa Benitez is changing things up.

Isaac Hayden goes off, Mikel Merino is on.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Well, according to Opta, we haven't seen a shot on target yet.

That Wifried Zaha half chance looked to be heading towards goal in the first half, but maybe Rob Elliot gathered it wide of the post.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Now it's Mamadou Sakho with the tricks! A little no-look pass through his legs on the half-way line, not sure what Roy Hodgson would have to say about that...

Sakho of Crystal Palace
Getty Images

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace's back four have stood strong today, and the visitors are looking to release a front two of Andros Townsend and Wilfried Zaha on the break.

Townsend is the forward of choice this time, but Newcastle regroup to get back behind the ball.

The Eagles work it left and Patrick van Aanholt scuttles on to it from left back before firing low across goal, but he's offside.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Well, Jonjo Shelvey won't impress Gareth Southgate with passes like that.

The England boss is in the stands today, but midfielder Shelvey pings a pass straight into touch under no pressure.

KICK-OFF

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Here we go, time for the second 45.

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HALF-TIME

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Well, there's not been too much to shout about at St James', but the game has warmed up a little as it's gone on.

Crystal Palace have probably just about been the better side, and no doubt the happier.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

DeAndre Yedlin has some serious gas.

He pinches the ball away from Wilfried Zaha and sets off on a scurrying run down field, before Zaha drags him down.

Jonjo Shelvey chips into the box from the resulting free-kick, but eventually Mamadou Sakho hoofs clear.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Now then, that yellow card actually went to Patrick van Aanholt for his reaction after the Yohan Cabaye challenge a few minutes back...

It looked like Stuart Attwell had called Ivory Coast international Zaha out for diving. He did go down easily and without really being touched.

Newcastle captain Jamaal Lascelles picked one up too in the aftermath of that tackle.

Wilfred Zaha of Crystal Palace
Reuters

CLOSE!

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

There go Crystal Palace's front two combining... from either flank.

Andros Townsend skips down the right and clips a ball to the back post, where Wilfried Zaha is arriving from the left.

The forward meets the cross inside the six-yard box, but heads wide. Big chance for Palace.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Now we've got a game on.

Crystal Palace win a free-kick on the edge of the Newcastle box, and it's a delightful delivery from Yohan Cabaye. Whipping in to the front post.

Joselu gets his head to it. Corner for the visitors.

CLOSE!

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Christian Atsu suddenly comes to life!

He muscles Joel Ward off the ball and drives into the box on his left foot, before unleashing an effort towards goal.

The fans at the other end of the stadium thought it was in, but that was the side netting bulging from the wrong side from Atsu's point of view.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Well, we're past the half-hour mark, and that late Yohan Cabaye tackle is about the only incident to speak of.

Give us a chance or two...

YELLOW CARD

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Newcastle have wasted that, and Palace go on the counter.

Hang on. Was that a lunge from Yohan Cabaye on DeAndre Yedlin? It didn't look too good and the Newcastle players go sprinting around their former team-mate.

Ouchy. It doesn't look great on second viewing either, a scissor-tackle if you will, but the Frenchman is straight over to apologise.

He gets away with a yellow. There's a yellow for Wilfried Zaha for diving too, he went down in the box moments before Cabaye's challenge.

Yohan Cabaye of Crystal Palace
PA

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

That's better from Jonjo Shelvey. When he clicks into gear, Newcastle start playing.

Shelvey spreads it wide to Christian Atsu and the hosts work the ball into the box, where Matt Ritchie sees his deflected effort squirm wide of the near post. Corner.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

That's the first save Rob Elliot has had to make, and it comes from a Wilfried Zaha effort.

The forward collects the ball wide in the Newcastle box, throws a shoulder and drives a shot low towards the front post.

In truth, Elliot would've been disappointed had he let that one creep in.

Wilfred Zaha of Crystal Palace
Reuters

YELLOW CARD

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

That's lovely from Andros Townsend, who pirouettes over the ball and let's it run through Florian Lejuene's legs. The brightest moment of the first half so far.

All the Newcastle defender can do is bring him down on the touchline. He gets a booking for his trouble.

A bit of pressure from the visitors. But they can't make the free-kick count.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

I'm trying to work out who's playing furthest forward for Palace this afternoon.

Without a fit striker to choose from, Roy Hodgson has opted for Wifried Zaha and Andros Townsend as his front two.

But both are playing wide at the minute - evolutionary tactics from Hodgson? We've heard of the 'false nine', but not a 'false nine and 10'?

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Matt Ritchie gets the pinger out and attempts to drive a crossfield pass into the path of Christian Atsu, who feels the full force of defender Joel Ward as he heads clear.

Newcastle need to be a little more precise with their attacking play.

Newcastle's Matt Ritchie
Reuters

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

Smart defending from Mamadou Sakho, and good football from the former Liverpool man too.

He mops up a loose ball and squeezes a pass between the Newcastle press to set Palace on the break. They can't make it count.

The ball is changing hands too regularly at the minute.

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

It's like Jonjo Shelvey was reading my live text.

The midfielder finds space on the edge of the box after Christian Atsu wriggles out of a seemingly dead end to feed his team-mate, and Shelvey winds up an effort on goal.

It doesn't make it past the first defender. Ambitious.

Newcastle's Jonjo Shelvey
Reuters

Newcastle 0-0 Crystal Palace

We've got double bubble on England managers past and present inside St James' today.

Roy Hodgson is in the dugout, and Gareth Southgate is in the stands. A chance for Jonjo Shelvey to impress in a World Cup year?

Jimmy Nail is among the fans, too. Maybe there's a musical gig up for grabs.