Newcastle 2-3 Liverpool: Dive denies NUFC after outstanding display

What a crazy night at St James’ Park.

Some feared we’d be blown away by this Liverpool side, but Benitez and the players almost got it absolutely spot on tonight, with some awful refereeing decisions and equally bad marking costing us in this one.

Unfortunately, a few controversial moments, both on and off the pitch, have soured things considerably (Fabinho blatantly dived for the free kick that lead to their winner and crowds off Liverpool fans were all over the Milburn and causing chaos) but that was one hell of a game of football.

We were outstanding, showing real energy, quality and commitment to the cause, but Rondon was the pick of the bunch me. Not only did he score his 10th Premier League goal with an emphatic finish to make it 2-2, he bullied Lovren all night and was absolutely tireless up top. Keeping BOTH him and Benitez is essential.



We defended well as a unit, limiting Liverpool as much as I’ve seen any side do this season from open play, but poor marking from one corner, one cross and one free kick has ultimately cost us.

Ritchie’s energy and tenacity was infectious, with him barely giving Mo Salah an inch of space, Dummett was typically solid, while Atsu also deserves real credit for grabbing a rare goal and causing them all sorts of problems on the break.

Here’s how the bottom half of the table looks after today’s results:

Elsewhere today, Cardiff were relegated after losing 3-2 at home to Palace, West Ham put three past Southampton, Bournemouth beat nine-man Spurs 1-0 and Wolves beat an already relegated Fulham 1-0 at Molineux.

So, just one game remains for us now, with a trip to Craven Cottage set to round off our 2018/19 campaign next Sunday:

An outstanding effort from the lads and an electric atmosphere to end the season at St James’ Park – it’s just a shame we didn’t get what we deserved.

Hats off to all involved – especially the guys from Wor Flags who put on one of the best displays yet in the Gallowgate.

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About Olly Hawkins

Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.

150 thoughts on “Newcastle 2-3 Liverpool: Dive denies NUFC after outstanding display

  1. The season is pretty much over now, it would be nice to win a Fulham but another good and entertaining game would be nice. 2019 has provided much better football from us so let’s continue like that. I will do a “5 things we learnt” and will try not to be too negative because we have the makings of a decent team IF Rafa stays and gets a decent budget.

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  2. 1. Our current team is mid-table quality at full-strength with Leguene, Almiron and Longstaff back. Almiron changes the way we play and I think we might have beat Liverpool with him in the team. And Liverpool are a very good team, so that is saying something.

    2. We need another forward to compete with Perez. I think Ayoze has done very well in 2019 but he is not Aguero. We need someone who is clinical – every week!

    3. Looks like Shelvey is done even though he was captain last week.

    4. We should do all we can to keep Hayden. He has really surprised me.

    5. Lascelles has a mistake in him. We have at least 3 better centre backs when fit – Lejuene, Dummett and Fernandez are better.

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  3. 6. Ritchie has 2 years left on his deal. I don’t care that he will be 30 soon, he has been a revelation at left wing-back. We need to keep him.

    7. With a consistent finisher we could be upper midtable rather than lower midtable.

    8. It looks like Shelvey and Diame are gone so we need an upgrade there. It would be nice to see Longstaff make the position his own but we need someone else. Maybe we can find another Wijnaldum and not have him playing under McClaren?

    9. Dummett is the most underrated player in the PL.

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  4. I have to finish on an even number –

    10. I am not one for “HEROIC FAILURE” but I expected a loss against Liverpool and it was a hugely entertaining game. I will take that over a dour nil-nil at Cardiff any day (as long as we are safe that is 🙂 ).

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  5. Olly: are you going to do a season review? I would like to read your closing thoughts. That Archie Brand guy has a good turn of phrase so I would also like to read his thoughts. The off-season can be boring and the Rafa saga will probably drag on so having a few reviews would be a lot better than dead air. I might write one and would like to see what other regulars in the comments section think as well.

    We can all probably start with the fact that it was a season of 2 halfs. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…

    I can tell you one thing – they can be no worse than Ryder or his intern Waugh.

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  6. Thought we played well and really didn’t deserve to lose. Thought the officials were pretty average. I would rather Atsu missed too so they would have been down to 10. The free kick for their 3rd goal was a complete joke.

    Last night was a glimpse of what could happen if we give Rafa some backing. Don’t hold your breathe.

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  7. So Cardiff are gone then. I said at the time that we were safe after the Everton win. Safe with 8 games left.

    Very entertaining game last night. I think we deserved a point but there was some pretty poor defending for all 3 goals. I’ve never liked Lascelles and last night was the perfect example of why. He’s only comfortable when he’s belting the ball into the crowd. Maybe Dubravka has to come for more crosses because we’re really poor in the air.

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  8. Ole’s at the wheel – of a 1981 model Skoda.

    Huddersfield have 15 points FFS including the 1 today.

    Goal Difference of minus 54.

    Glory, Glory Man United.

    Their whole business model is top 4 (like Spurs’s).

    Fckn hilarious that they have spent like 700 million quid since Old Red Nose left and this is what they have!!!

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  9. GBC (Gone By Christmas) OGS was such a bad hire. He got lucky for a few games but there was nothing in his managerial career to suggest that he would succeed at Man U. They made a choice out of sentiment and the fact that they are considering Rio Fckn Ferdinand as a technical director shows they haven’t learnt anything from this.

    I am really happy about this. Their great hope, Paul Pogba, will be off now as well. Has a lot of talent but not really suited to the PL.

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  10. I have said it before but they hired the wrong ex-player. Lucky for them that he has a rolling 1 year deal and they should/could sack him NOW. But they won’t.

    I have also said this before but the Glazers should just fire all of their management and coaches and hire the correct ex-player to lead the team.

    HIRE the whole Ajax staff – Van Der Sar as Chairman (the correct ex-Man U player), Overmars and Ten Hag.

    The fact they will give GBC 200 million quid in the summer to waste will make me even more happy. There is no chance they will be contending for at least 5 years.

    I know we wont either, but I think I deserve some schadenfreude where Man U are concerned.

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  11. There is talk of Rio being Man Utd director of Football 😂 oh my god, how to destroy a football club.
    Dennis Wise is available and has more experience than Rio – both are on board with how Ashley runs a football club

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  12. Man Utd = epitome of a club who’s so concerned with money they forgot they’re a football club. Same as Ashley just on a different level.

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  13. Sharpy and Stuart: I probably shouldn’t be so happy about this as it doesn’t really have anything to do with NUFC but their fans and ex-players are such a bunch of smug t0ssers that I cannot contain myself.

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  14. I agree, Eric.

    Meanwhile the very NUFC situation is Rondon wins player of the year and isn’t judged worthy of a permanent transfer… 😂

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  15. Eric – what bores me is the likes of Man Utd and Lpool expecting success just coz they once had it – like it’s an entitlement.

    I don’t think there is a pundit worth their wage mate. I think they are all full of $hite.

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  16. Stuart79:
    I agree, Eric.

    Meanwhile the very NUFC situation is Rondon wins player of the year and isn’t judged worthy of a permanent transfer…

    Stu – I’ll hold my hands up, I wasn’t convinced at the idea of him coming in coz I wasn’t sure he was going to provide more than what we had. I wasn’t against signing him, I just wasn’t blown away by the idea.
    He has 10 goals and 7 assists in 31 games – and happy to say he proved me wrong.
    But, what has been more pleasing than his contribution in goals and assists, is his presence in the side allowing the formation to change to to the 3-4-2-1. I’m not sure it would have been as effective with Gayle as that loan striker – but it is a formation that has not only made us look more solid at the back, but has produced football far more pleasing to watch.

    Personally, Dubravka would have been my player of the season – but I’m pleased for Rondon. He’s made a huge contribution this season, and I really hope a deal can be struck for him to stay.

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  17. Again, would split the season into 2 halves. We were really crap until after boxing day and none of our players to that point really did anything. I would judge them all after that and say there were quite a few that performed well.

    WE WERE SOMETIMES UNWATCHABLE UNTIL AFTER BOXING DAY. 3 points in the first 10 games FFS and UNWATCHABLE.

    I am not having a loanee as player of the season for the simple fact that he is not our player.

    So, 2019 players that excelled. In order;

    Dummett
    Hayden
    Ritchie
    Almiron
    Perez
    Schar

    A pity that they were injured but could have been best of 2019:

    Longstaff
    Lejeune

    best loanee;

    Rondon

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  18. So there was violence in the ground as the club sold corporate tickets (200 ) to Liverpool fans ! And that’s after warning fans not to sell their tickets to pool fans outside the ground.

    My player of the year Dubravka
    most underated player Dummett
    most overated player Yedlin

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  19. KIMTOON:
    Special mention to Rondon who has been bloody brilliant, hope we buy him.

    Yeah fair play Kim, you were confident Rondon was going to work out from the outset.

    I have always been team Dummett. Said on here many times in the past that he’s my cult hero – Shamrock can vouch for me 😂.

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  20. I think it has gotten to the point where Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher should be banned from commenting on their former teams during the matches. Every match they do is 95% from the perspective of Man U and Liverpool. It is like the other team are not even involved. It might be what the TV Execs want – theatre – but it is the theatre of screams with Neville going on a weekly rant about how bad Man U and nothing else, and Carra doing his Liverpool love-in.

    Have you ever seen those games where they have fans doing the commentary? It ends up being an incoherent shouty mess because they cannot control their emotions. That’s what it is getting like with GNev and Carra now. But do we really want to hear about those 2 teams 95% of the time as these 2 pundits are given a soap box every week?

    As I said, probably good TV but it gets a bit boring for the rest of us who do not support Man U or Liverpool.

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  21. I’d play Dummett in the centre of a 3. He’s our best defender. And way better than Lascelles.

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  22. Maybe I should just enjoy Neville’s current misery and Carragher’s probable near future misery? But it is becoming like Brexit. Where it has taken over all football thought, like Brexit has taken over all politics and you have these partisan monkeys mouthing off day after day from the pulpit that TV and the internet has given them.

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  23. georgio:
    I’d play Dummett in the centre of a 3. He’s our best defender. And way better than Lascelles.

    Totally agree georgio. But you are interrupting my rant 🙂

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  24. Sharpy17: Yeah fair play Kim, you were confident Rondon was going to work out from the outset.

    I have always been team Dummett.Said on here many times in the past that he’s my cult hero – Shamrock can vouch for me 😂.

    Vouched for 👍

    Solid end to season. Fingers crossed Rafa stays.

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  25. the player that has shocked me and went down in my view is Alexis Sanchez when he first kicked off at the gunners i thought he was one of the best midfielder in the PL,what the hell has happened to him god knows

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  26. I have been away fed up with Ashley and our crap football Eric, oh and getting divorced 😂

    Been keeping an eye on things here though.

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  27. Shamrock: Sorry to hear about your divorce. I was divorced 10 years ago and it is hell. Probably about enough I want to say about it on here, Just saying I understand what you are going through.

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  28. Also, Shamrock. I think we have played pretty well in 2019.

    Not Keegan’s “entertainers” or Bobby Robson but I grew up with Gordon Lee, Richard Dinnis and Bill McGarry as managers so I was never accustomed to great football. If we had good players we sold them to Liverpool or Spurs – Gazza, Waddle, Beardsley, Alan Kenedy.

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  29. Good to see you back on, Sham.

    The football has actually been pretty good this year. Think Almiron changed the way we played. Hopefully Rafa will get backed but I doubt it.

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  30. Shamrock: Vouched for

    Solid end to season. Fingers crossed Rafa stays.

    Sham – Great to see you back on mate. Sorry to hear about your separation, but hope you’re fit and well other than that.
    I did wonder with the bother over there last month with the journalists getting shot – I know you’re in the job but don’t know where you’re based.

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  31. Yeah I agree re: the standars of football this year. It was the few months up until January that was dire. Almiron has been a catalyst for a lot of what we have done of course but Ritchie at left back, Hayden innthe middle and Schar atvthe back have been standouts for me, plus young Longstaffe.

    Thanks for well wishes re: divorce.
    Was a hard 12 months and still not done yet but much better than it was!

    We all have our ups and downs in life though and a lot are a fair bit more severe than mine. So I’m not going to moan about things.

    Is Rafa going to stay, thats the question.. If he does then maybe we can start hoping for top 10 finishes and a bit of investment. If he does not…

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  32. Sharpy cheers bud. Work is fine, I’m in South UK 😊

    Been Spearfishing for the last year too, thats pretty liberating albeit sea was bloody freezing last time I went in!

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  33. Also, do we want the Mackems to make it through the playoffs? I’m not fussed, dont reckon we will see them back in the PL for a long while either way – but it would be crap for their fans to see them go into admin if they stay where they are.

    As for Championship playoffs, be good to see Leeds back in the big time but not sure they are ready yet. Villa can stay where they are for me until their fans have learnt their lesson properly for laughing at us! They are probably the best equipped for the PL though.

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  34. I have seen so many Man City game where the opposition just give up before they start !

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  35. Everybody just assumes Man City are so much better but I would probably pick Leicester’s defenders over theirs – Chilwell, Evans and McGuire anyway.

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  36. Shamrock:
    Sharpy cheers bud. Work is fine, I’m in South UK

    Been Spearfishing for the last year too, thats pretty liberating albeit sea was bloody freezing last time I went in!

    Sham – Spearfish?!, have you gone all Ed Stafford on us like??. It explains why you’ve not been on here though – keep getting your phone wet.
    Please you’re ok though mate & taking things in your stride.

    I am 100% confident Rafa is staying now. I just don’t see him at another club. I know Ashley is a tool, but if we think about it – it was him who shifted McClaren (albeit 3 or 4 games too late) and signed off on Rafa coming. Yes Charnley would have negotiated, but Ashley would have had to rubber stamp to wages. There’s no arguing he could have and should have backed him more – but I think he had a big part in getting him and keeping him. I think he knows just how important he is to the stability of a club that has been so unstable during his ownership (largely down to his bad decisions).
    I think Rafa wants to stay and the club won’t want him to leave – so a successful compromise will be found in the end.

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  37. The Citeh fans whistling when Leicester have possession like they are Real Madrid! I always hated that in Spanish football and now the oil-moneyed and entitled fckers think they can do it.

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  38. Leicester have looked the better side here – if they score first I think City might drop the points that let Lpool back in.

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  39. Sorry to yap on about this Man C/Leicester game but it is all there is left to play for in the PL.

    As Shamrock said, The Championship playoffs will be interesting.

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  40. Shamrock, Great to see you back on. Funnily enough i was talking about you and many other bloggers we don’t see anymore to a mate last night.
    Really sorry to hear you have divorced, it’s a horrible thing to go through, i know from experience .
    Hope life gets better for you anyway mate.
    Don’t be a stranger, we miss your input .

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  41. So far so good for Leicester… they are giving it a go and doing well. Despite what the bin dippers did to us re dives etc I still hope they take the title rather than City… is there anyone that wants City to win the premiership again? Other than their fans of course.

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  42. City looking very nervous. Wayward passing and snatching at shots. Hope they get a last minute winner. That will piss the Scousers right off.

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  43. Aye Kompany has just put City firm favourites for the league there like.
    That was a hell of a strike & nice it was him. He’s been a great servant to City and a top player for them – a great leader who’s had to get through so horrible injuries.

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  44. Mackems will be sh!tting themselves.

    I have said this many times on here but I read when the 2 chancers first bought the club that Ellis Short wrote off all of the debt BUT, BUT, BUT had a lien on the last parachute payments.

    So, if they do not win the playoff they are in trouble unless Ellis decides to be generous and basically gift the chancers some more money out of the goodness of his heart.

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  45. c’mon Olly you know Rafa Silva is going to Man City to add to their existing collection of fine Silva(s).

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  46. Stuart79:
    I was referring to the league, Eric.

    I knew you were mate, I just wanted to get another dig at the way the pundits have gone so wankadelic about the Spurs’ stadium. I have never seen anything like it, except…

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  47. Gary Neville’s latest blast at Man U. I find it quite entertaining and most of what he says is true – that Man U seem to have as their main criteria for a sporting director that they are ex-players and none of them have really done anything apart from pontificate on the box. Obviously GNev is talking from experience when finding that punditry and management are completely different animals. But then he goes on and ballses up his argument by calling Manchester United the “biggest football club in the world”. B0llocks, maybe biggest club in Ireland.

    I will continue…

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  48. Man U are obviously a massive club but biggest/greatest in the world. That is stretching it. An example of something that if you say it often enough you start to believe it. I am not sure if they are the biggest/greatest club in England. What they have had is confluence of probably the greatest Manager England has ever seen and the unprecedented rise of the PL into a global juggernaut. It does not make them the “greatest/biggest” club in the world. Fergusson’s longevity may have made it appear so but even that appear temporary.

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  49. How do you judge the “biggest/greatest”?

    Revenue – they are up there but others are very close. Even Chelsea and Arsenal are about their level.

    Trophies? How do you compare domestic and international. Juve and Bayern would be their level if domestic. Barca, Real Madrid and Liverpool better in Europe. I suggest that Man U are up their own arses about where they stand in world football because they happened to hire a football genius who stayed with them for 29 years. When he goes, they remain a massive club but biggest in the world – do me a favour.

    Give Ole a couple of seasons and we will see who is the biggest club in the world (copyright Gar Neville). Better still, let Rio be Director of Football and they will be well and truly “merked” and the practical joke will be on them.

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  50. As for Hayden:

    I didn’t think any of us were bothered that he would leave until he really showed his stuff in 2019. Now it would be sad to see him leave.

    I have said for months that we could probably persuade him to stay with a much larger contract. His home situation doesn’t really seem that different to most other players now with his child not having the medical problems she once had.

    Just double his wages.

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  51. Glad at least 1 person read my rant Prem 🙂 I don’t really mind Gary Neville. I just wish he would preface his description of Man U with “One of”. I don’t think there is much doubt that they are “one of the greatest football teams in the world”. But GNev always says THE greatest – when many Bayern, Liverpool, Real Madrid, Barca and Juve would disagree.

    AC Milan were probably the greatest team in the world at one point and now they are almost an afterthought. The mighty can fall GNev, whole civilizations can fall, never mind football clubs!!!!

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  52. Man U were actually a great team a few years ago with GNev, Scholes, Ronaldo and Van Nistlerooy.

    Now they have a babyfaced ex-player out of his depth managing a bunch of man-children more interested in instagram than playing.

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  53. Sorry to go on about the pundits and Man U. It is just that I usually read The Guardian and Daily Mail and Football365 and during a time when the Pl has a down to the wire fight between 2 of the best teams ever to play in the competition they have 75% of their stories about Man bl00dy United!

    I really do hope they fade in the same way that Inter and AC Milan have.

    I am sure they will still be a force but please no more of this obsession!!!

    OH, am I adding to the obsession. Not really! Just explaining how I am annoyed with it now.

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  54. Real Madrid and Barca are the two biggest imo. You never see players from these clubs wanting to leave to join Man Utd.

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  55. Good play by the underrated Mackem to clatter Barca player. Same from Milner.

    About time that Barca got their own medicine who fall over when hit by a butterfly and hack every team they play.

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  56. Fantastic from Lpool that like. Outstanding performance – great heart shown from the first minute and really well deserved.

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