Newcastle managed to dust off at least some of the criticism leveled at them over the past fortnight by beating Liverpool 2-0 at St James’ Park.
A Martin Skrtel own goal from a deflected Gini Wijnaldum shot opened the scoring with our Dutch number five sealing the three points in stoppage time with a cool finish from a Moussa Sissoko through ball.
Much was made of Liverpool’s impressive form prior to the match and it’s fair to say that optimism was in short supply following two dismal results for United but you have to give credit where it’s due. Part of Liverpool’s upturn in form can be attributed to the increased work rate that Jurgen Klopp has instilled within his group and Steve McClaren said prior to the game that we’d have to beat that to win. True to his word we did cover more ground and ended up winning the game.
What was pleasing from our perspective was the increased sense of commitment from our players who actually looked like it mattered. And of course the crowd responded to each tackle in turn.
This win does not turn our season around but it has built some bridges and does show that we do have players able to get us out of this. We just have to do what we did today in a more regular basis.
Next Sunday we’re away at Tottenham where we can expect another tough day where we’re not going to be favourites again. But if we approach the game as we did today we can walk away with credit, even if we don’t get a result.
Newcastle: Rob Elliot, Paul Dummett, Chancel Mbemba, Fabricio Coloccini, Daryl Janmaat, Georginio Wijnaldum, Vurnon Anita, Jack Colback, Moussa Sissoko, Siem de Jong, Papiss Cisse
Subs: Karl Darlow, Jamie Sterry, Kevin Mbabu, Yoan Gouffran, Florian Thauvin, Ayoze Perez, Aleksandar Mitrovic
Liverpool: Simon Mignolet, Nathaniel Clyne, Martin Skrtel, Dejan Lovren, Alberto Moreno, Lucas, Joe Allen, James Milner, Jordan Ibe, Firmino, Christian Benteke
Subs: Adam Bogdan, Kolo Toure, Jordan Henderson, Daniel Sturridge, Adam Lallana, Divock Origi, Cnnor Randall