Maritimo 0 - 0 NewcastleKO: Thu Sep 20 18:00:00 BST 2012 Ground: Estadio dos Barreiros
Att: 4000 Referee: R Schorgenhofer
Maritimo v Newcastle United Preview Europa League Group D
Newcastle begin their Europa League Group D campaign away to Maritimo without the services of leading strike duo Papiss Cisse and Demba Ba.
Cisse has been withdrawn from the squad because of illness, while Ba's absence comes on the back of his agent hitting out at manager Alan Pardew's decision to name him among the substitutes for Monday's draw at Everton.
The Senegal forward stepped off the bench to score twice at Goodison Park, but has not travelled with the rest of the Magpies party to the Portuguese island of Madeira.
Pardew has also left midfield duo Yohan Cabaye and Jonas Gutierrez out of his plans with a number of youngsters drafted in for the continental campaign.
Goalkeeper Tim Krul (elbow), defenders Danny Simpson and Fabricio Coloccini (both hamstring) and Ryan Taylor (knee), as well as midfielder Cheick Tiote (calf) miss out through injury.
Cisse's place in the squad has been taken by 17-year-old Adam Campbell, while James Tavernier, Shane Ferguson, Mehdi Abeid, Haris Vuckic and Sammy Ameobi are also included.
After their impressive efforts last term which culminated in a fifth-place finish, the North East club have not won in the Premier League since their opening day success against Tottenham.
Maritimo warmed up for Thursday night's game with a creditable 1-1 home draw with Sporting Lisbon and when asked how he had viewed the Magpies' slow start, boss Pedro Martins said: "It's normal.
"They beat Tottenham, which was a good result, and then they lost at Chelsea, which is normal because Chelsea are a very strong team.
"They played on Monday night and had a good second half, they were very, very strong. They play in a very British way and it will be a very, very difficult game."
Maritimo earned their place in the group stage of the competition by defeating Asteras on away goals after drawing 1-1 in Greece, and then Georgians Dila, winning 1-0 at home and 2-0 away.
That unbeaten start to their campaign has given them confidence that they can extend it by making life intensely difficult for Newcastle in the humid conditions at their stadium.
Martins said: "It's very important to win your home games. That is our short-term aim so we can be strong in the future."
Maritimo 0 - 0 Newcastle: Young Newcastle Side Earn A Point In Portugal
Newcastle United failed to start their Europa League campaign on a winning note as they were held to a goalless draw by Maritimo in their Group D game in Madeira on Thursday.
Shola Ameobi and Dan Gosling hit the frame of the Maritimo goal in the first half, and the former struck the crossbar again in the second period.
Ten minutes from time Valentin Roberge saw his header come off the Newcastle crossbar and then cleared off the line by Davide Santon, as both sides failed to break the deadlock at Estadio dos Barreiros.
Alan Pardew's side started the game on the back foot and could have fallen behind with less than two minutes on the clock when David Simao found space on the left to send in a dangerous cross which was only just too strong for Heldon as he slid in.
The hosts were simply too good and too slick for the Premier League club during the opening 25 minutes and, had it not been for Rob Elliot, could have been in serious arrears.
Elliot pulled off a fine reaction save to keep out Sami's 11th-minute volley and then blocked with his legs after the striker had run clear of the visitors' defence.
But having endured a difficult start to the game, the Magpies gradually started to find their feet and went close to the opening goal on four different occasions inside four minutes.
Gael Bigirimana saw his 27th-minute corner tipped over by goalkeeper Romain Salin as it threatened to dip under the crossbar and then French midfielder Romain Amalfitano had a goal-bound volley blocked after connecting with another Bigirimana corner.
But it was the woodwork which came to the Madeira side's rescue twice in quick succession with Newcastle turning the screw.
Central defender Mike Williamson found the ball at his feet inside the penalty area and, when his shot was deflected, Ameobi dived in to head the ball towards goal where it hit the post and was bundled away by the recovering Salin, who had initially been wrong-footed.
Gosling was denied by the opposite upright on the half-hour when his 25-yard drive thumped off the foot of the post with Salin beaten.
The game settled down as both sets of players regrouped, although the first half ended in controversy when Sami stumbled having looked to have got the better of Williamson and Steven Taylor.
And in the melee which followed, the ball was stabbed back to Elliot prompting fury from the home fans as their side appealed in vain for a close-range free-kick for a back-pass.
Ameobi was unfortunate not to score just two minutes after the restart when he capitalised on an error by Joao Guilherme to charge into the box and side-step Roberge before curling a shot past Salin, but on to the bar.
The striker was joined on the pitch by younger brother Sammy when he replaced Haris Vuckic after 53 minutes, and the pair combined well to set up Amalfitano within four minutes, although his shot was wayward.
The home side should have gone ahead with 59 minutes gone when Sami ran into space on the left and crossed for substitute Fidelis to blast a first-time effort just past the post with Elliot helpless.
But the senior Ameobi went close at the other end five minutes later, forcing another decent save from Salin after bamboozling Guilherme with his turn on to Santon's pass.
Maritimo became increasingly careless in possession as time ran down and it appeared that if there was to be a winner, it would be the visitors leaving with the points.
But the Magpies enjoyed a major escape eight minutes from time when Roberge connected with Rafael Miranda's flick-on and Santon somehow managed to smuggle the ball away with the help of the goal-frame, and Elliot saved unconvincingly from substitute Goncalo at the death.