Newcastle's drive continues as Liverpool stall


Sat, 22 Oct 19:51:00 2011

* Newcastle beat Wigan 1-0

* Wolves stage late rally

* Norwich battle for a point at Liverpool (Adds Liverpool's draw with Norwich)

Newcastle United maintained their unbeaten start to the season on Saturday, sending Wigan Athletic to the bottom of the Premier League with a 1-0 victory at St James' Park thanks to a late winner from French international Yohan Cabaye.

Newcastle are fourth on 19 points, level with third-placed Chelsea, after the 25-year-old France midfielder curled home a shot in the 81st minute, his first goal for the club since his move from Lille.

Liverpool's drive for a top four place stalled when they were held to a 1-1 draw by promoted Norwich City at Anfield, leaving them four points behind Chelsea and Newcastle.

Liverpool are seven behind leaders Manchester City who play at second-placed Manchester United on Sunday.

In the days other games, West Bromwich Albion won 2-1 at Aston Villa, Sunderland won 2-0 at Bolton Wanderers and Wolverhampton Wanderers drew 2-2 with Swansea City.


Although Newcastle were not at their best, they were still too strong for struggling Wigan who went down to a sixth successive league defeat, sliding into last place, equal on five points with Blackburn Rovers who play Tottenham Hotspur at Ewood Park on Sunday.

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew told the BBC: "It was a really good effort by Wigan, they were faster than us at times. It needed a bit of magic and it was a great goal, Yohan's technique was top class."

Liverpool, who hit the woodwork three times at Anfield, could not capitalise after ex-Norwich player Craig Bellamy gave them the lead with the last kick of the first half.

Liverpool dominated for long periods but, apart from that goal, could find no way past Canaries keeper John Ruddy who made a series of brilliant saves, including one in the fifth minute of stoppage time from Steven Gerrard to preserve their point.

Norwich's goal came after an hour when Grant Holt marked his 100th appearance for the club with a thumping header, taking full advantage of poor keeping from Pepe Reina who came for the ball but was nowhere near collecting it.

The day's opening match saw Wolves score twice in the last five minutes through Kevin Doyle and Jamie O'Hara to end a run of five successive defeats and force a 2-2 draw with Swansea.

The Welsh club seemed set for their first away win since being promoted after first half goals from Danny Graham and Joe Allen put them in control of a Wolves side lacking in confidence and ideas.

Wolves fans were leaving the ground in droves and the ones that stayed booed Mick McCarthy as he made his tactical substitutions in the second half. But, in the end, his tinkering worked and he was relatively happy.

"We have played better in the last five games and got nothing. We needed a break, and hopefully that is it.

"I'm not sure we are jumping around for joy as it has been a difficult day for us, but when you pick the bones out of it, it's a good point."

Elsewhere in the Midlands there was drama in the derby between Villa and West Brom who came from behind to win in the league at Villa Park for the first time since 1979.

After Darren Bent gave Villa the lead with a 23rd minute penalty, the match effectively turned 13 minutes later when Villa defender Chris Herd was sent off for what looked like an innocuous tussle with West Brom's Jonas Olsson.

Referee Phil Dowd also awarded West Brom a penalty for Herd's misdemeanour which Chris Brunt blasted high and wide, but he was more accurate with a corner on the stroke of halftime which found Olsson's head, allowing the Swede to equalise.


Paul Scharner hooked in what proved to West Brom's winner after 57 minutes.

Sunderland won 2-0 at lowly Bolton Wanderers, Stephane Sessegnon and Nicklas Bendtner earning the visitors their first away win of the season and leaving Owen Coyle's men in the relegation zone along with Blackburn Rovers and Wigan.

Five matches are being played on Sunday including the top-of-the-table clash between Manchester United and Manchester City at Old Trafford (1230 GMT). Chelsea make the short trip for a west London derby at Queens Park Rangers (1500 GMT).


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