10mins A goal so simple it was untrue.
Steven Gerrard played it right to Kromkamp who floated over what should have been
an easy ball to deal with. Peter Crouch lost Peter Ramage and got behind Jean-Alain Boumsong
was back-pedalling - to head into the Leazes goal from close range.
appearedto be marginally offside but was probably level when the ball was
played. Given's positioning also looked less than perfect. 0-1
35mins Cisse lifted a high ball to the far post where Gerrard headed
it to Crouch. The beanpole striker touched the ball back to Gerrard who hit
it powerfully first time past Given into the far corner. 0-2
41mins Another ludicrously simple goal. Ramage played the ball back
to Scott Parker who clipped it towards the penalty spot and Shola Ameobi timed his run
to guide a header over Pepe Reina into the top corner. 1-2
Half time: Newcastle 1
Boumsong made his biggest black-and-white blunder yet, which is obviously
saying something. Gerrard hoofed a hopeful ball towards Crouch and Boum
inexplicably kicked at thin air. Crouch was then in on goal but still had to
beat Given from a narrow angle.
Full time: Newcastle 1 Liverpool 3
Boumsong wrestled him to the ground before
he could shoot and referee Riley pointed to the spot before waving a red card.
Cisse hit the penalty to Given's right while the keeper dived left.
The goalscorer lifted his shirt to display a message to his wife and bairns as he ran to the Milburn/Gallowgate corner
- and was promptly booked. 1-3
Glenn Roeder said:
a very tough afternoon for us.
respects it was like last weekend against Manchester United, we have conceded an
early goal against a quality side and it was always going to be a struggle after
that. We didn't keep the ball well enough and when you are playing a side who,
last season, were European champions, you are going to have to work very hard to
get it back of them.
change games and conceding so early meant we were always chasing things. At 2-1
at half time we felt we had a good chance of getting back into it. But the
penalty and the sending-off has killed us.
take aside the issue of his cost, whether it is someone who cost very little or
as much as Rio Ferdinand, disregard that, it's still a poor piece of defending.
you will not get me to do is slag off one of my players in public because I was
a player once and a manager who did that wasn't a good manager.
that does not mean to say that when Boumsong and myself sit down and go through
the goals I will not tell him where he could have done better. Jean-Alain is
very upset, who wouldn't be after what led up to the goal and his sending-off?
appeared to be a simple clearance but he hasn't got enough on the ball and Peter
Crouch has got the other side of him.
to make a decision. Did he let the player go or did he try to make a tackle?
Obviously he made a decision to try to retrieve the ball, which ended up in a
penalty. I've got no complaints with the decision, the referee got it absolutely
right and he will now be missing against Chelsea.
mentally tough enough to bounce back? Well, he didn't exactly take the shortest
route off the pitch after he was sent off, so that would suggest he has got to
be mentally tough.
cannot knock him as a person, he works hard in training, but we will look at the
evidence and I will talk through it with him. But as we all know, you can't
continue to make mistakes, especially when you play in the position he
had trained without any problems for 10 days so we were very surprised on Friday
when he felt some tightness in the area of his hamstring injury.
had played against Liverpool he wouldn't have made it to half time and he is
probably another seven or 10 days away from playing again, so he will not make
the Chelsea game."
Rafa Benitez said:
"Our idea is to think about one game at
a time and in this case, it was to win three points. We have to keep going to be closer,
and if the other teams keep winning, we have to do the same.
"It was difficult because they starting
keeping the ball and playing long balls, and it was more difficult for us to go
"But we created enough chances, we won
3-1 and I'm sure if we had needed another goal, we would have got it.
"It's really important for them and
also for the team to see all the strikers scoring goals. Now the problem is for me. All of them
are scoring goals, but it's a good problem and we will have more confidence for
the forthcoming games.
"He was playing well,. He can keep the
ball and pass and win it in the air.
"We decided to sign Peter (Crouch) because in
the English league, it's really, really important to have a player like him.
"If you want to win titles, you need a
good squad. That means you need good players who if you call upon them, must be
"We had a new system and they were
aware. I am happy for me as a manager and for them. That means they are really
"They have two good players up front,
one good in the air and the other one quick, and we tried to control them.
"We used different players, Kromkamp
and Warnock, in the wide areas to go forward. We started the game really well with
the movement of Harry Kewell and Warnock going forward and we created a chance
with the first cross in the first minute.
"I don't expect the FA to
take any action against him (Cisse).
"We talked after I saw the incident on
television and he said he is happy to meet people from Newcastle and say sorry
about what he did.
"I think he was under pressure because
he had not scored a goal for a long time, so when he scored, the reaction he
made was almost normal.
"It was a bad reaction but one made when he was under
Liverpool @ SJP - Premiership years
Lost 1-3 Ameobi
2003/04: Drew 1-1 Shearer (pen)
2002/03: Won 1-0 Robert
2001/02: Lost 0-2 no scorer
2000/01: Won 2-1 Solano, Dyer
1999/00: Drew 2-2 Shearer, Ferguson
1998/99: Lost 1-4 Guivarc'h
1997/98: Lost 1-2 Watson
1996/97: Drew 1-1 Shearer
1995/96: Won 2-1 Ferdinand, Watson
1994/95: Drew 1-1 Lee
1993/94: Won 3-0 Cole 3
Boumsong became the sixth Newcastle player to be dismissed this
season, trudging off the field in the footsteps of Parker, Taylor, Bowyer and Babayaro and the rescinded Jenas red. Referee Mike Riley has been responsible
for three of those dismissals.
In our role as
perennial wet blankets and glass half empty merchants, we were careful to
express our relief at the points gathering exercise that accompanied the switch
of Glenn Roeder from Academy coach to interim Saviour.
And while we paid tribute to the effort and occasional accomplishment of the
team he fielded, it was in the knowledge that his time in the black and white
bridal suite was liable to end at any moment.
Said to say though that two successive Sunday examinations have provided a stark
reminder of our "fur coat and no knickers" status - and with a return
to our own personal Room 101 on the Kings Road up next, the honeymoon period
looks well and truly over.
This defeat by Liverpool was by no means as painful as the loss by a similar
margin at Old Trafford a week previously, despite our falling behind again
almost before we'd broken sweat.
Two down and struggling to make any headway through a congested midfield, we
looked uncomfortable at the back and lacking cohesion up front.
N'Zogbia showed his forward running prowess all too briefly before departing,
while Emre and Parker ran round in ever-decreasing circles - hamstrung by a lack
of width outside them due to Liverpool's game plan.
looked as if the task was beyond us.
But at what was an opportune moment to revitalise crowd and players alike, Shola
netted. And had Boumsong not greased his forehead then he could have had his
first goal for the club and his side had a half time cuppa in decidedly better
Crucially, the crowd had stayed with Roeder and his side - both in body and
attitude. And there was just the chance of one of those occasional great days
unfolding, when the crowd and players combined to produce that St.James' Park
synergy that saw us home despite overwhelming odds.
Instead, and in the classic style to which we've become accustomed, within seven
minutes of the restart, Jean Alain's headless poultry impression had knocked the
stuffing out of all concerned.
And that really was that.
While the Liverpool players and slackjaws on their bench had a key role to
play in the dismissal of Bowyer at Anfield last December, Boumsong's early bath
at SJP in this game was all his own work.
The Frenchman's continued inability to follow the flight of a bouncing ball saw
him react to the sight of Crouch lumbering past him by clumsily upending him.
Riley's reaction was predictable and correct and the consequent conversion of a
third goal for the visitors ended this as a spectacle with forty minutes still
Liverpool seemed happy not to inflict further punishment - meaning that Roeder
may regret not chucking Moore on for at least a brief taste of senior football
for the first time this season.
For our part we kept our shape reasonably well and Solano had a more effective
second half, despite being forced to fill in at right back.
But it was all a bit false, as it had been at Anfield a couple of seasons ago
when Shola scored and a bloodless 1-1 draw was played out. There were a few more
tackles today though...
Just as it could be claimed that Roeder's arrival coincided with a succession of
easier games for United, then the boot's certainly on the other foot with this
little sequence of matches.
The caretaker boss can rightly turn round and say that he's at least tried to
drill his defence since he assumed control, in contrast to the previous
administration. Like Michael Owen's metatarsal though, Boumsong's rick today was
outside the scope of what could be prepared for.
At the risk of being labelled pro-French here though (not a charge often
against us) we have to express some sympathy with Boumsong for playing alongside
stand-in centre half Elliott - no lack of effort from him but those little
dribbles on the edge of the box are doing nothing for our tickers....
What worries us greatly is that we slip back into the post-Lisbon/Cardiff rut of
12 months ago after what seems an inevitable defeat at Stamford Bridge on
Boumsong was rightly pilloried as he left the field on Sunday by many fans, who
were justifiably angry at his contribution to screwing their day up.
But he'll doubtless feature against Charlton, where we'll need a quality
performance from him.
Quite simply, stopping three defeats on the bounce becoming four at the Valley
next Sunday is a major concern - not least to quieten down the more hysterical
sections of the media and our fanbase, who are now flicking the switch to
"everything terrible" from the alternate setting of "everything
wonderful". It doesn't help.
With Luque and Chopra out of the mix, the burden on Shearer and Shola is
weighing heavily at present. And even though he'll not be returning to an FA Cup Semi
Final (save for a minor miracle), the sight of Owen on the field (alongside Dyer) will come as a massive relief
to all concerned.