A sensational strike from Luis Suarez rescued a point for a dominant Liverpool against 10-man Newcastle at Anfield. The Magpies had Captain Fabricio Coloccini sent off for a late lunge at Suarez, as well as being forced to replace three players through injury.

The hosts were the better side throughout the contest, as they controlled possession for large periods but ultimately didn’t have the cutting edge to go with the patient build up. Only Suarez looked like causing the visitors any problems all afternoon and it was after a hopeful long ball from Jose Enrique that the Uruguayan struck.
Promising youngster Raheem Sterling and Jonjo Shelvey had chances to win it at the end for the home side, but Newcastle held on for a point and will be glad for their efforts.

Alan Pardew will be less pleased with how his squad looks next week though, as Coloccini was given a straight red card for a reckless challenge on Suarez with less than ten minutes to go, and three of his starting XI were withdrawn prematurely. James Perch, Demba Ba and Yohan Cabaye all went off before the final whistle, meaning Pardew’s tactical hand was forced and the Geordies had to hold on to a point for the final stages.

Sterling started brightly for the hosts and had a couple of lung-bursting runs that caused Newcastle problems but didn’t have the final ball to match his electric pace. The closest the Reds came to scoring was when Suarez went close with a free-kick, narrowly sending his effort over Tim Krul’s crossbar.

For all Liverpool’s wasted chances and wayward finishing, there was a timely reminder that Newcastle had some skill to back up their steely defence. Hatem Ben Arfa provided the skill after 43 minutes and Yohan Cabaye was on hand to apply the stunning finish for the Geordies. Ben Arfa turned Jose Enrique inside out before crossing to Cabaye at the far post and the former Lille midfielder controlled with his chest before unleashing a spectacular volley to beat Brad Jones from a tight angle.

Liverpool came out for the second half looking for an end product to go with their patient build up and almost had it when Suarez tested Krul from 20 yards, only for the Dutch keeper to palm it away. New signing Nuri Sahin also scuffed his effort as it looked like the hosts were set to suffer another home defeat.

However, a moment of sheer genius from Suarez ensured Liverpool earned a point.

Ironically, it was a long ball from former Newcastle left-back Jose Enrique that set up the chance, as Steven Taylor let it drift over his head and Suarez ghosted in behind. Watching it from 70 yards, Suarez expertly controlled on his chest before rounding Krul and tapping into the empty net.

It almost went from bad to worse for Newcastle just moments later when Suarez again dribbled free in the box before finding Shelvey in the area. All the midfielder had to do was stroke it past Krul but the former Charlton man couldn’t connect properly and could only fire tamely into the grateful grasp of Newcastle’s keeper.

Pardew’s men were hanging on to a point but their cause wasn’t helped when Coloccini saw red for a tackle on Suarez. The Uruguayan had already flicked the ball away from his South American counterpart when Coloccini almost connected with a high boot. The referees assistant was the one who prompted the man in the middle to show the red card and leave Newcastle a man down for the remaining six minutes.

It almost became worse for Newcastle too, when Suarez’s free kick was deflected and finally flicked onto the bar by Shelvey with one of the last kicks of the game.

By Chief Sports Writer, Marley Anderson

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