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Marítimo deny Newcastle winning return

CS Marítimo 0-0 Newcastle United FC
The hosts extended their unbeaten European run and denied the Magpies a winning return to continental competition in an entertaining stalemate.

Newcastle's Mike Williamson vies for the ball with Luís Olim of Marítimo
Newcastle's Mike Williamson vies for the ball with Luís Olim of Marítimo ©Getty Images

CS Marítimo extended their unbeaten European run to five matches with an entertaining 0-0 draw against Newcastle United FC in Madeira.

Absent from European competition since the 2006/07 UEFA Cup, Newcastle had high expectations of their return, but started life in Group D with a point after an entertaining draw in which both sides were denied by the woodwork.

The visitors were given a rude awakening, as Rob Elliot twice denied a lively Marítimo early on. The Newcastle goalkeeper produced a stunning reaction save on 11 minutes to keep out Sami's close range volley, further frustrating the forward with a smart block a minute later. After riding their luck defensively, Alan Pardew's side settled. Only the the frame of the goal prevented them stealing a lead, as first Shola Ameobi's stooping header, then Dan Gosling's low, left-footed shot from range came back off the right upright.

Ameobi was left cursing the woodwork shortly after the restart, too, as his curling shot smacked the bar after the striker cut inside his marker in the area. With Shola soon joined by brother Sammy, Newcastle threatened more, but Marítimo went closest as Sami picked out Fidélis, whose first-time effort whistled just past Elliot's left post.

There was little doubt as to each side's dangerman, as Shola Ameobi brought a strong low save from Romain Salin, and Marítimo's Sami was again denied by Elliot. A combination of crossbar and an alert Davide Santon kept out Valentin Roberge's header late on, and the spoils were shared.