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Newcastle 2 Liverpool 0: First Thoughts

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Newcastle with a potentially crucial win for their season as Georginio Wijnaldum stamps his name on both goals.

Michael Regan/Getty Images

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Newcastle 1 Skrtel (OG) 68', Wijnaldum 94'
Liverpool 0

  • Pregame Thoughts: Christian Benteke celebrated a birthday this last week, and fans will be hoping he wished for goals when blowing out those candles. We're also beginning to come to terms with Joe Allen's lumberjack routine--Red Pandas are hairy creatures after all. Nathaniel Clyne is also coming into the game having bee rested in the previous fixture for the first time all season. We're not sure exactly what a rested Clyne is capable of, but Paul Dummett better have laced his boots with a double knot. 

  • Snappy start for the good guys with James Milner's strong tackle right in front of Klopp indicative of the business-like demeanor across the team.

  • Not a good look for a center forward when Moreno plays a low peach into a wide open six, and you're standing flat-footed 15 yards behind the play. Be better Benteke. 

  • Firmino's hair is slowly but surely morphing into a Ruffio 2.0. And we like it. We like it a lot.

  • Benteke doing well to clear the danger from Newcastle's goal on that corner. Good thing, too, otherwise it would have been an easy 1-0 lead for the Reds.

  • First third of the game gone and Liverpool are enjoying subtle dominance. Well organized in defense, good spacing in attack, snappy solidity in midfield, and great transitional movement between it all. If Jordon Ibe would consider taking 17 less touches on the ball before passing that could be good. Of course, Benteke could try making a couple of runs from time to time, give the Englishman something to aim for. 

  • Skrtel staying staying cooler than a polar bear's toenails on that one v one tackle against Cisse. 

  • Halftime: Patience is the name of the game, so far, but Liverpool's bench options beckon. Newcastle will be reasonably pleased if it stays at the current pace, with Cisse always capable of a goal, and a strong bench of their own. Our halftime team talk involves some leftover pepper, paneer, and chicken stuffed dosas from last night. The lentil sauce these bad boys come with is to die for.

  • Dejan Lovren has been having an ok game, but he just made Mbemba look like peak Ronaldinho on that one. 

  • Second third of the game gone, and Newcastle have taken advantage of open flanks with much more success. Liverpool doing just enough defensively, but the game is at a point where a Geordie opener is just as likely as anything else. Studge, please.

  • One shot and one pass aside, Joe Allen's having a great game. So switched on defensively, makes life easy for his midfield mates.

  • Which is probably why Vernon Anita just tried to snap his ankle.

  • The game gets a world class make over with Lallana and Studge on for the dreadful Benteke and--wait, Firmino?!?? Da fuq.

  • Starting to see why Newcastle are where they are in the table this season: tie ball game, just as much chance to win this as Liverpool, and suddenly heads start going a bit, tackles start flying in unnecessarily late, and the tuggy, pushy stuff happening at almost every interaction. Don't get sucked into that poor discipline, Reds.

  • Jordan Ibe has all of the nuanced awareness of a flathead screwdriver.

  • ***GOAL*** Martin Skrtel (OG) 68' Skrtel ties the record!!! Seven own goals for Liverpool puts him level with Jamie Carragher. Only four more to be the all time leader in that statistic--YOU CAN DO IT, MARTY!! Also: Shit. 

  • Jordon Ibe's day hits Divock Bottom as he gets hooked for Origi. Mistake ridden day for the Englishman, but he's young yet.

  • THAT WAS NOT FUGGIN OFFSIDE REF. Also would have been Moreno's best goal in Red, I'm seriously. 

  • Seven minutes plus stoppage time to go--we can score seven goals in that time, right? Bite em if you got em.

  • Milner's always rocking ragged socks and scuffed knees. We like that.

  • Herr Klopp buttressing both defense and attack by shifting Skrtel to center forward.

  • Coloccini tiger palm's Skrtel on an aerial 50/50--pretty sure that's not cricket.

  • ***GOAL*** 94' Wijnaldum. Beatiful break and finish, what can you say. Wijnaldum gets his deserved goal and seals the ball game.

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We'll be back shortly to take an in-depth look at everything that happened in today's game with the full recap. Until then, let us know your take on the ups and downs of the match in the comments, and if you haven't already, join the community on the Liverpool Offside, where we'll have full coverage and lively in-game discussion for every match this season.