2-0 down at Anfield but United are rallying troops
Newcastle United are staring in the face of another away defeat, this time, at the hands of title contenders Liverpool. Rafa Benitez's men are firmly in control of the tie after some questionable defending from the United back-four.
Fielding a make-shift side, due to injuries, Alan Shearer expected his team to at least push on for a draw. But, after a piece of disgraceful defending from the lines-man at Anfield, United went behind. Yossi Benayoun, the Israeli midfielder was clearly in an offside position from where he scored the first goal, but neither the referee nor his clueless lines-man ruled it out.
The second was a work of genius from Dirk Kuyt as he slotted a rocket header passed a hapless Steve Harper, who has had a phenomenal match in terms of saves.
The game was killed off with the first goal, the commentators will agree, and with shoddy refereeing an apparent plague at the moment, Newcastle United should not complain.
The away side did however put in a good 10 minutes into the game before slipping into their usual mediocrity. Ten minutes only? Really? Yes, sir. That's just a crying shame, we know.
Big Al has some tough decisions to make apparently now. However, in all fairness, the game is over. Psychologically, what's the point, right? However, one must never give up if down there - so, fight on, Newcastle United FC.
Jonas Gutierrez, Michael Owen, and Danny Guthrie are expected to come on sometime in the second half. The fans will hope it comes sooner rather than later. Maybe even local lad Andy Carroll - but I feel that should not even be in consideration.
In the eyes of this journalist- Alan Smith, Mark Viduka, and Nicky Butt should be benched.
However, most likely, Alan Shearer would remove Obafemi Martins, Joey Barton, and Alan Smith to facilitate those changes.
There's nothing more to say than 'good luck' if you're a fan, and if not a supporter, a grin and a sigh is all the Magpies will get on this day.
Newcastle United 0 - Liverpool 2