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Last Updated: Sunday, 15 May, 2005, 15:59 GMT 16:59 UK
Newcastle 1-1 Chelsea
Claude Makele leaves his mark on Newcastle skipper Alan Shearer
Champions Chelsea set the record for the fewest number of top-flight goals conceded in a season in an entertaining and open draw at St James' Park.

The draw means the 15 the Blues let in beats Liverpool's post-war tally of 16 and equals Preston's record of 1888/89.

Newcastle took the lead against the run of play when Geremi put through his own net under pressure from Titus Bramble.

Frank Lampard blasted in the equaliser from the spot after Celestine Babayaro bundled over Eidur Gudjohnsen.

The champions made sure their season ended in fine style despite failing to record a 10th consecutive away League victory.

Their draw meant the Blues were only once beaten throughout their league campaign and also saw them extend the most points in a Premiership season record to 95.

Chelsea dominated possession in the first half with Lampard, Joe Cole, Tiago and Jiri Jarosik all finding plenty of time and space in the final third.

Jarosik, who replaced William Gallas in Chelsea's only change from the side that comfortably saw off Manchester United, had the first chance.

The Czech midfielder cut inside onto his right foot and curled a shot a couple of feet past Shay Given's post.

And the visitors continued to look the more likely to score. Lampard's lovely floated ball over the top put Gudjohnsen away but Jean-Alain Boumsong recovered brilliantly to block the shot.

The lively Cole then blazed over and Jarosik had another shot easily saved by Given.

But a sun-soaked home crowd were soon celebrating as James Milner's wickedly inswinging corner was tipped over by Carlo Cudicini and from the next corner Geremi could only bundle the ball into his own net under pressure from Bramble.

However, Chelsea's reply was instant as Gudjohnsen raced onto a Jarosik flick from Ricardo Carvalho's long punt downfield and was tugged down in the box by former Blues full-back Babayaro.

Lampard blasted the penalty home despite losing his footing as he struck the ball.

Alan Shearer, recalled to the starting line-up after sitting out the last two matches, had the final chance of the first period but his 25-yard free-kick never seriously troubled Cudicini.

Newcastle's lacklustre first-half showing seemed to rile boss Graeme Souness and the home side came out with a real sense of purpose on the resumption.

The Magpies were suddenly depriving Chelsea time with some biting challenges and they started to win the midfield battle.

Babayaro fizzed a shot just wide and following a sustained period of pressure, Patrick Kluivert had a fine downward header tipped around the post by Cudicini.

Chelsea still threatened on the break and Gudjohnsen's elusive run saw Given forced to scramble low to his left to turn the shot away.

In a frantic end-to-end finale there was still time for Geremi to clear off the line and Jarosik to be denied by a superb reaction save from Given.


Newcastle: Given, Carr (Taylor 45), Boumsong, Bramble, Babayaro, Jenas, Ambrose, N'Zogbia, Milner, Shearer, Kluivert (Chopra 76).
Subs Not Used: Andrew O'Brien, Harper, Robert.

Booked: Babayaro, N'Zogbia, Kluivert, Jenas.

Goals: Geremi 33 og.

Chelsea: Cudicini, Geremi, Ricardo Carvalho, Huth, Johnson, Makelele, Jarosik (Watt 90), Tiago, Lampard, Cole (Nuno Morais 89), Gudjohnsen (Oliveira 84).
Subs Not Used: Cech, Grant.

Booked: Cole, Ricardo Carvalho, Tiago, Geremi.

Goals: Lampard 35 pen.

Att: 52,326

Ref: H Webb (S Yorkshire).


SEE ALSO
Souness looks forward to new term
13 May 05 |  Newcastle United


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