Newcastle 2-0 Liverpool: Clinical Cisse nets double as Reina is sent off on miserable day for Reds
The Sengalese striker was the difference with two impressive goals, while the Spaniard's dismissal for a headbutt on Perch made it a terrible day for Kenny Dalglish's men
By Daniel Kellard
A double from Papiss Demba Cisse inspired Newcastle to victory on Sunday afternoon, as the Magpies inflicted a third consecutive Premier League defeat on an under-par Liverpool.
The Sengalese striker scored a fine header and then rounded the keeper to add a 2nd goal, before Reina's head butt on Perch saw the visitors reduced to ten men.
The first chance of the game fell to Jonjo Shelvey, whose dipping shot took a wicked deflection but just went over the bar.
A Steven Gerrard free kick then landed on the head of Martin Skrtel but he failed to find the target from inside the six-yard box.
There was then some controversy as Andy Carroll broke through on goal and went down was felled by Newcastle goalkeeper Tim Krul. Replays showed that the Liverpool number nine had gone down far too easily and referee Martin Atkinson booked him for diving, much to the joy of the Toon faithful.
Liverpool continued to have the best of proceedings and, after a lovely ball out wide by Luis Suarez, Craig Bellamy’s cross was deflected onto the bar by Krul. Danny Simpson then appeared to handle on the line after Mike Williamson’s header was diverted goal-bound, but nothing was given despite the Merseysiders protests.
Against the run of play it was the home side who took the lead in the 19th minute. A lovely run from Hatem Ben Arfa led to him supplying a wonderful cross to the back post for Papiss Demba Cisse who guided a well angled header into the far corner of the net.
A couple of minutes after the half time interval the Geordies were extremely close to extending their lead. A floated cross in from the right by Yohan Cabaye was guided towards goal by Williamson, whose header struck the post.
But just before the hour mark Newcastle were to get their two goal cushion. A swift passing move ended with Ba pushing a ball across the area and after both Ben Arfa and Jamie Carragher failed to latch on the loose ball, Cisse calmly rounded Pepe Reina and found the back of the net. The Sengalese international appeared to be in an offside position but the goal stood.
Liverpool came straight back on the offensive and after Krul couldn’t deal with a cross into the box it appeared Suarez would halve the deficit. However a remarkable block from James Perch further frustrated the visitors.
Things went from bad to worse just under ten minutes from time for the visitors. After Reina recovered a Williamson header Perch intentionally tripped the Spaniard. A headbutt from the Liverpool keeper followed with Perch making the most of it. The referee produced a red card meaning Reina will miss the Reds' next three games, including the FA Cup semi-final with Everton. Having made all their substitutions, Liverpool finished the match with Jose Enrique in goal as proceedings wound to a close in the north east.
With Sunday's victory, Newcastle move 11 points clear of the men from Merseyside.
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