Friendlies round-up

Magpies, Fulham, Sunderland and Norwich beaten in pre-season

Danny Graham: At the double for Swansea in 3-3 draw with Stuttgart

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Newcastle suffered a heavy pre-season defeat at the hands of Cardiff, while Fulham, Sunderland and Norwich were also beaten.

Newcastle's preparations for the new season suffered a blow as they went down to a 4-1 defeat against Championship side Cardiff.

The Magpies conceded three goals in the space of 10 minutes in the first half and, despite a better showing in the second half, could only reduce the deficit by one goal through Shola Ameobi's 49th-minute penalty before Etien Velikonja restored Cardiff's three-goal cushion.

Aron Gunnarsson opened the scoring for the home side in the 16th minute with a fine volley, Joe Ralls doubled the lead four minutes later and Gunnarsson was on the scoresheet again, turning home a low cross after 26 minutes.

Newcastle's fierce rivals Sunderland also suffered a disappointing result as they were defeated 1-0 in their friendly away against Leicester.

The home side were the better team in the first half, creating several good chances, and they were finally rewarded for their dominance when substitute Tom Parkes poked home late on in the second half.

There was controversy a few minutes later when an effort by James McClean looked like it might have crossed the line before being clawed away by Kasper Schmeichel but Leicester held on for the victory.

Two London sides went head to head at Craven Cottage and it was the newly-promoted Championship side Charlton who came out on top 2-1.

Johnnie Jackson and Yann Kermorgant were on the scoresheet for the away side, cancelling out the opening strike from Fulham's Alex Kacaniklic.

Two goals in two minutes from Pavel Pogrebnyak and Adam Le Fondre earned Reading a 2-0 pre-season win over Crystal Palace at the Madejski Stadium.

Pogrebnyak grabbed his first goal in the blue and white hoops on 52 minutes when his shot was deflected past the Palace keeper to open the scoring.

The Royals were then two up when Hal Robson-Kanu's low cross found Le Fondre and he made no mistake from close range.

German tests

Danny Graham's fine pre-season form continued as Swansea recovered from 2-0 down to draw 3-3 with Stuttgart in their final pre-season friendly at the Liberty Stadium.

The visitors dominated the opening half as Christian Gentner and Vedad Ibisevic found the net.

Swansea recovered thanks to a double from Graham, fresh from his midweek hat-trick against Blackpool, and Nathan Dyer's deflected cross put them ahead, only for substitute Raphael Holzhauser to earn Stuttgart a draw.

Norwich suffered a 2-0 loss at home to Bundesliga outfit Borussia Monchengladbach.

Belgian Igor de Camargo put the visitors ahead in the 16th minute and substitute Branimir Hrgota ensured victory in the final minute.

Another team facing German opposition were QPR as they played their second pre-season friendly in the country against Augsburg.

The home side went ahead through a penalty by Aristide Bance before Rangers striker Djibril Cisse equalised.

An own goal from Anton Ferdinand put Augsburg ahead again just before half-time but a second goal from Cisse earned QPR a 2-2 draw.

Aston Villa continued their preparations for the new Premier League season with a 3-3 draw against Bundesliga side Werder Bremen.

Villa fell behind to an 11th-minute goal from Niclas Fullkrug as he headed Eljero Elia's corner past Shay Given, but the visitors hit back strongly as Darren Bent drew them level with a tap-in.

Ciaran Clark then made it 2-1 lead on 22 minutes when he turned to fire home from Charles N'Zogbia's free-kick.

The home team cut the deficit when Elia's left-wing cross went straight in early in the second half, before Bent got his second of the match in the 68th minute by drilling home from N'Zogbia's corner.

However, Villa's advantage did not last long as Aaron Hunt grabbed the equaliser with a left-foot strike from the edge of the area.


Everton's pre-season campaign also ended on a disappointing note as they went down to a narrow 1-0 defeat against Malaga in southern Spain.

Weligton scored the only goal of the game in the 74th minute, heading home a free-kick from Diego Buonanotte.

But there were plenty of positives for David Moyes' side, with Malaga's goalkeeper Wilfredo Caballero forced into several fine stops on either side of the interval.

In another poor result for a Premier League side, Southampton crashed to a 4-0 defeat at home against Udinese.

The Serie A side began the match strongly and striker Antonio Di Natale scored with a 25-yard effort after 12 minutes. Brazilian midfielder Willians doubled the lead 12 minutes later with another long-range strike and Di Natale got his second in the 36th minute as the Saints defence continued to struggle.

Manager Nigel Adkins made four changes at half-time but Southampton failed to stop the Udinese onslaught as Colombian Luis Muriel extended the Italians' lead.