The Anfield jinx continues- Liverpool 3 Newcastle 0.

3rd goal.
Newcastle arrived at Anfield this afternoon looking to get their first win there since 1994. It was always going to be a tricky fixture today..

Liverpool have been in fine form under Kenny Dalglish in recent months and are now eyeing European qualification. Of course this gives them a lot of incentive to win their remaining games. Last time the two sides met Newcastle were victorious after beating Liverpool 3-1 at St James’ Park earlier in the season. Despite all the turmoil and off-field difficulties that faced the club at the time Newcastle played well that evening, could similar heroics be repeated in the return fixture today?

No is the short, blunt and honest response to that question. Newcastle looked uninterested in truth. Perhaps they feel the club are safe from relegation now and there’s not much to play for? I have seen this from Newcastle sides in the past, players will take their foot off the gas and won’t play with any urgency unless there’s something to play for. Whether that be survival or a European spot.

With Newcastle boss Alan Pardew arrogantly saying several times that we are safe now, it did make me think that we maybe wouldn’t approach our remaining fixtures with the same attitude. Of course we probably are safe now and although the best we can hope for is a mid-table finish I think we should still be doing everything we can to end the season on a high. It’s all well and good having ‘nothing to play for’ but I sometimes think players forget that fans travel far and wide and pay good money to see their team play with some balls.

Rant over, back to today’s game. The big question before the game was whether Newcastle old boy Andy Carroll would be fit to face his former employers. The England international has been nursing an injury and his inclusion today was touch and go. It was confirmed that Carroll wouldn’t be risked from the start but he would be among the substitutes.

Liverpool started well, playing with 5 in midfield they out numbered Newcastle’s 4 in the middle. Newcastle seemed to lack confidence in the opening stages, no one really seemed to want to keep the ball and they struggled to string any passes together. One observation I made on Cheik Tiote’s part is for a player who is usually so composed and willing to take a player on, he seemed to want to get rid of the ball as soon as he got it today.

It took only 10 minutes for Liverpool to take the lead. Argentinian Maxi’s weak shot deflected off Danny Simpson to wrong foot Tim Krul and go in the back of the net. Replays show that the ball in fact came off Simpson’s hand, so had the shot gone anywhere other than the back of the net it would have probably resulted in a Liverpool penalty anyway.

Newcastle looked a little jaded but Jonas looked energetic and determined. The winger gave Liverpool rookie Flanagan a torrid time down the left hand side and managed to win United a couple of free kicks in potentially dangerous areas. As well as been awarded some free kicks Newcastle won quite a few first half corners, but were unable to make them count.

Newcastle offered very little in terms of real chances in the first half. Shola had a very weak left-footed shot and Jose Enrique tried his luck from a free kick, but it didn’t even get past the Liverpool wall. Oddly at the end of the half Liverpool’s goalscorer Maxi and Fabricio Coloccini swapped shirts before making their way to the dressing room for a half-time team talk.

According to the commentators on ESPN Alan Pardew really got stuck into his players during his team talk at the break. Clearly unimpressed with what the lads had produced in the first half the manager wanted to see more from his team in the second half. It seemed as if the players responded well to the criticism they received and started the second half well.

Following a nice Newcastle move Joey Barton found himself in space from 10 yards out but could only strike the ball wide. Joey probably should have scored and on another day would have. It was about the best chance for Newcastle all game and had it gone in it could have changed the outcome of the game.

On the hour mark it got worse for Newcastl., Mike Williamson failed to deal with a Reina clearance that was chased down by Suarez. Williamson tried to let the ball roll out of play for a goal kick but Suarez was clever and persistent and managed to get behind Williamson and keep the ball in play. Williamson then tugged at the nippy striker and brought him down in Tim Krul’s penalty area.

Without any hesitation the referee pointed to the spot. Up stepped Dirk Kuyt, who coolly placed the ball in the corner of the net sending Krul the wrong way. 2-0 to Liverpool and if the players were a little uninterested before they were now deflated and faced an uphill task of trying to get something from the game.

Andy Carroll’s presence on the touch line as he warmed up brought mixed emotions from the two sets of fans. The home fans chanted ‘There’s only one Andy Carroll’, not to be out done by the 3000 travelling fans who made their feelings of Andy known by singing less supportive lyrics.

Andy would make an appearance, but not before Luis Suarez put the game well beyond Newcastle’s reach with his strike on 65 minutes. He took his goal wonderfully and the three goal margin fully summed up Newcastle’s afternoon.

Carroll arrived on the pitch for the last 20 minutes to a chorus of boos from the away end. I must say I felt sick watching him come on today wearing a red shirt and I thought it was inevitable that he was going to get on the score sheet. It would have been typical and would of topped off what was a terrible day for Newcastle United.

Alan Pardew decided to freshen things up too, the ineffective Peter Lovenkrands was replaced with Nile Ranger and after that Shola made way for tubby Kuqi. The damage was done and the pair were unable to inspire a Newcastle consolation goal. It would be Kevin Nolan who would have Newcastle’s last attempt on goal, it was an effort that sailed over Reina’s cross bar.

Interestingly during the last minute of injury time Shane Ferguson replaced Jose Enrique, which makes me think maybe Jose has picked up a minor injury. Either that or he had an appointment with a estate agent on Merseyside and the boss let him leave a little earlier 😆

On reflection today was a bad day at the office. Apart from Jonas I didn’t see one performance from a Newcastle player. It was below par and I was disgusted with the lack of effort shown by one or two lads. It seems as if a few of them are maybe more interested in where they are going on holiday this summer. It just seems like they have adopted the whole ‘the jobs done’ attitude. Maybe I’m wrong and being unfair, but that wasn’t fun to watch today.

Lets show some balls against Brum next week. Let’s try and get as many points from 9 as possible and try and finish 10th.

Liverpool: Pepe Reina; Glen Johnson, Jamie Carragher, Martin Skrtel, John Flanagan; Raul Meireles, Lucas, Jay Spearing, Maxi Rodriguez; Dirk Kuyt, Luis Suarez.

Subs: Peter Gulacsi, Jack Robinson, Sotirios Kyrgiakos, Jonjo Shelvey, Joe Cole, David Ngog, Andy Carroll.

Newcastle: Tim Krul; Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini, Jose Enrique; Joey Barton, Cheik Tiote, Kevin Nolan, Jonas Gutierrez; Shola Ameobi, Peter Lovenkrands.

Subs: Steve Harper, James Tavernier, Steven Taylor, Ryan Taylor, Shane Ferguson, Nile Ranger, Shefki Kuqi.

Referee: Peter Walton.

Attendance : 44,923.

42 thoughts on “The Anfield jinx continues- Liverpool 3 Newcastle 0.

  1. Good read Mark.

    I didn’t expect anything today but the lack of effort was a downer for me, the main thing lacking was the quality in the final third – which isn’t new to us.

    We really have to beat Birmingham on Saturday.


  2. cheers andrew. may laptop kept freezing so it took ages and rushed at the end. not 100% happy with it, but you get the idea… yeah exactly bang on mate, i agree with you about the disappointment, yet was never really expecting anything.


  3. canny write up Mark, I almost switched off when Carroll came on, like you I thought it was nailed on he would score but decided to leave it on incase Tiote “caught him a good un” 😉

    Andrew…the thing is, we really don’t have to beat Birmingham on Saturday, and thats possibly going to be the problem we have now 😉 🙄


  4. exactly! no incentive means no effort which is bad for supporters that still want to smile on a saturday afternoon haha


  5. Good read that 🙂

    I thought the sub at the end for Jose might have been a bit of a statement by Pardew, EG, less of the shyte disinterested performances


  6. Agree with pretty much everything you’ve said mate.

    I felt Jonas was the only player even remotely interested today.

    One that did puzzle me was when Dalglish moved Flannagan accross to left back, why we didn’t swap Barton and Jonas. We could have even brought Ferguson on for the ineffective Barton.


  7. We have taken the foot off the peddle after Birmingham won the Carling Cup, that ended our hope for Europa Qualification….

    Turned up against Wolves, because we were getting dragged into relegation fight and Man Utd. draw guaranteed us safety….

    Hoping for 4 points in next 2 games


  8. i would have liked fergie to start . him left jonas right barton and tiote in the middle, nolan off shola. lovenkrands can go and sell programmes or something


  9. A few of the lads were already on the beach – not good enough – the fans deserve a bigger effort than that


  10. Best is the only one of the strikers I would keep. Get rid of Strolla and Lovepants and possibly send Ranger out on loan. We need at least 2 strikers – I think Ben Arfa will play off a main striker as pardew said he will play as a no. 10


  11. He’s big and can finish, Sholas big but frail. never thought he’d be someone we needed in January,shows how quickly he turned it round


  12. agree about releasing lover and i’d loan ranger to a fizzy pop team next season.. best i’d keep as a squad man defo-shola hmmm, you see i’d still be sad to see him go. i just think i’d miss singing the shola song at games,haha.


  13. Agree with 3hours wasted our strikers Best apart are championship level . Shola really annoys me , if the lad had the right mentality he would of made a top striker ,the skill is their but the effort sadly lacking . Maybe Pardew should give Airey some game time on saturday ,he cant do any worse than Shola and Loverkrands did today .


  14. Can’t say the result surprised me:

    Liverpool- pace and quality in the final third
    Newcastle- no pace and little quality in the final third.

    We need a good summer in that department and we’ll be fine…


  15. oh dear i forgot to mention we should of had a second half peno for sure. it annoys when people say a consolation goal doesn’t matter (was talkin to a friend about it) goal difference is vital!


  16. To be fair I don’t think Colo was that poor either, he didn’t make any tremendous tackles, but he did what was asked of him and tried to push on forward when allowed to get things going, don’t think I could fault his performance really. When a team’s that poor its hard to make a good impression like


  17. Should we be surprised at the result?
    We are a side with an ambition to stay up at the start of the season. They are looking to qualify for europe.
    Maybe that is as good as we are presently.
    After thirty five games the league table reflects how good you are.
    This is what annoys me with the mackems.
    We are a mid table to bottom three side. Accept it. Improve again in the summer. You cannot ask a squad that got relegated to become something they are not


  18. As long as Shola plays the “local lad card”, he will recieve blind loyalty from a lot of fans and also i keep hearing the excuse that he plays when not fit, he has had more chances to prove himself than any other player at NUFC and at 28yrs old will never come good as far as im concerned. The odd good game just isnt good enough at this level, we will never move on as a club with him in the set up, i cant bear to watch him lumbering around the pitch and some of his touches and lack of control are embarrassing, get rid, now! and tek loverpants with him!


  19. I think we should look at loaning Ranger out, but if we were to get rid of Ameobi and Lovo too, it would leave us incredibly light up top.

    Personally, I would stick Ranger on loan (With a recall clause), Release Lovo and keep Shola. Then next season our strikers could be: New Signing, Ben Arfa (No. 10 role), Best, and Ameobi. Even then I still think we are a little light.


  20. Cracking write up of a bad game Mark 🙂

    I never expected owt from the game to be honest, but I expected a little bit more effort.


  21. Ranger seriously needs to be loaned out and get week-in-week-out football. If we have ambition to push on then its time to move Lovenkrands on as he simply doesnt bring enough. His first touch is appalling and he gets pushed off the ball too easily. Would keep Best and Goala but get in new first choice striker if we are to play a single striker. Then just inject some speed to our midfield. Barton on the right hasnt worked for a couple of games now, and it is evident that he is not a winger, he needs to be in center. ohh yea
    totally agree with the match report above.


  22. Toby. You forget that the side that was playing for a euro spot were candidates for relegation not so many weeks ago! So, what’s the difference between us and them? They’ve got good players and a manager and coach that can clearly motivate them. We’ve a manager that said we’re safe but forgot the small matter of £800k per position! Perhaps MA would be justified in kicking some Rses – starting with the manager?


  23. Mark I think you summed it up pretty well mate.
    TBH I didn’t expect a lot but I do expect the players to put a shift in, and it really annoys me that these very well payed players can do so little for the money they earn.
    It annoys me that Strolla can shit talk that we should be going for Champions league then plays like his usual self, and it really annoys me that our Captain fantastic can talk about kicking Judas when he barely kicked the fuking ball.
    There is NO EXCUSE for that 👿


  24. Mark,
    Congratulation’s on a good thread. 😉

    Nothing much to add, other than I expect Nolan or Pardew to come up with a rallying call to the fans for the Brum game.. blah,blah,blah. 👿

    It’s about time that the manager and players accept responsibility for yet another insipid and weak performance.

    Loverman is clearly not good enough and Simpson concern’s me more each week.
    We simply can’t rely on Shola as he is far to inconsistant. (where have we heard that before 😕 )

    Pardew’s true test will be in his summer recruiting plan ❗


  25. However badly we played, the mistake by Williams for the penalty just lost us the game, cos at 1-0 the game is still within our reach, no matter how crap we were. Absolutely garbage, sorry for the lad like, but it just shouldn’t happen. 🙁


  26. I always think Willo is a liability in these big games. Think it would be worth giving Tayls a shot in the last few games


  27. Big D….fair enough jockeying the ball out, but in this case he should have just given the ball the old welly and got rid of it…still, hopefully he’ll learn…bit of a liability at times though. 🙁 …


  28. Toonsy…I know mate…I keep telling meself that…I think the last relegation did me heed in ! 😳


  29. 1) because of goal difference whu CANNOT get above us
    2) because of goal difference wolves need 8 points from 3 games to go above us, which means 3 wins (wba (h) mackems (a) blackburn (h))
    3) wigan need 7 points from 3 games (villa (a) west ham (h) stoke (a))
    4) blackpool need 7 points from 3 games (spuds (a) bolton (h) manure (a))

    and none of this is counting the other 4 teams below who have a worse goal difference……blackburn for example will need 4 points to go above us brum 3.

    Not mathematically safe, but highly unlikely to go down 😉


  30. toonsy @ 38 those facts have actually perked me up a bit , the teams below us have each other to play a draw against Brum would be enough i reckon . i was starting to panic after todays performance 🙂


  31. Sy , Very nice piece there 38,

    But 3 points sat would be really nice . just to make sure 🙂


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