Liverpool and Newcastle tied 1-1 in English soccer’s Premier League yesterday, while Queens Park Rangers and Reading are still looking for a first win after also sharing a 1-1 draw.
Liverpool has only two league wins in 10 matches this season, although is now on a five-match unbeaten run in the competition. The Reds are 12th in the 20-team league with 11 points, and Newcastle, in 10th, has 14 points.
“We were outstanding,” Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers told Sky Sports. “Our possession and intensity was relentless. We went to sleep for the goal but I thought we deserved the three points.”
Liverpool had won its past seven home league games against the Magpies stretching back to December 2004.
Yesterday, Newcastle led at halftime at Anfield with a goal from Yohan Cabaye, with Luis Suarez replying for the hosts after 67 minutes. Newcastle center-back Fabricio Coloccini was red-carded on 84 minutes.
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard made his 600th career appearance for the Reds, who pushed forward in the early stages. Newcastle goalkeeper Tim Krul had to punch clear when Gerrard curled in a free kick after three minutes, then Suarez appealed for a penalty four minutes later after falling to the ground under pressure from Coloccini.
Newcastle didn’t have a shot until 15 minutes into the game, Demba Ba firing high over the bar.
Both sides struggled to create many more clear chances until Cabaye got the opening goal two minutes before halftime. Hatem Ben Arfa ran down the right side of the field and crossed for Cabaye to fire into the net.
Newcastle was disrupted by two injuries. The Magpies had to replace James Perch with Danny Simpson in the first half, then early in the second period Ba limped off and Sammy Ameobi came on.
Liverpool started the second half better than the visitors and was finally level when Suarez got his 10th goal of the season. The Uruguayan controlled a long ball from Jose Enrique, went round Krul and scored from close range.
Substitute Jonjo Shelvey fell backwards as he attempted to beat Krul from eight yards soon after, Suarez providing the pass.
Raheem Sterling had a shot deflected wide, while at the other end Brad Jones held a low shot from Ben Arfa.
Coloccini was shown a straight red card for a late challenge on Suarez, but the visitors were able to hold on. Krul did have to tip the ball onto the bar in injury time from a Suarez free kick.
‘Not Much Intent’
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew said he accepted the decision to dismiss Coloccini even though there was “not much intent” to injure Suarez.
Liverpool has now tied half its league games this season and trails leader Manchester United by 13 points.
“We just couldn’t finish off the many chances we had,” Rodgers said. “I am sure our draws will turn into wins.”
QPR and Reading both missed a chance to end their winless runs after a draw at Loftus Road. The Hoops are only kept off the bottom of the standings because of a superior goal difference to Southampton, with Reading one point ahead.
Kaspars Gorkss, who joined Reading from QPR at the start of last season, volleyed the visitors into a lead on 16 minutes after Sean Morrison headed against the bar.
The hosts had several chances to tie the game before halftime, with Royals goalkeeper Alex McCarthy tipping a free kick by Esteban Granero onto the bar.
Djibril Cisse did score for QPR in the 66th minute, with a shot into the bottom corner.
Both teams pushed for the win, McCarthy again making an important save to deny Adel Taarabt after 83 minutes.
“The key is the first win and once we get that we can settle down and play our football,” QPR manager Mark Hughes told reporters.
At the top of the standings, Manchester United holds a one-point advantage over Chelsea, with defending champion Manchester City another point back.
United defeated Arsenal 2-1 two days ago, Chelsea drew 1-1 at Swansea, and City tied 0-0 at West Ham.
In other games, Norwich beat Stoke 1-0 and Aston Villa defeated Sunderland 1-0, with Wigan winning by the same score at Tottenham. The match between Fulham and Everton was a 2-2 draw. West Bromwich Albion hosts Southampton today.