Nov 1, 2014 at 12.45pm UK at ​St James' Park
NewcastleNewcastle United
1-0
Liverpool
Perez (74')
Taylor (45'), Sissoko (49'), Janmaat (62'), Colback (79')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Skrtel (44'), Henderson (72'), Lovren (89')

Match Analysis: Newcastle United 1-0 Liverpool

Newcastle United's Spanish striker Ayoze Perez (L) celebrates scoring the opening goal with Newcastle United's French midfielder Remy Cabella (R) during the English Premier League football match against Liverpool on November 1, 2014
© Getty Images
Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at Newcastle's 1-0 victory over Liverpool as the Magpies move into the top half of the table.

Newcastle United made it three league wins in a row courtesy of a narrow 1-0 victory over Liverpool at St James's Park this afternoon.

Neither side could break the deadlock in an uneventful first half, with Glen Johnson clearing the hosts' best chance off the line shortly before the break.

The winner came with less than 15 minutes remaining as Ayoze Perez pounced on an Alberto Moreno mistake to slam home from close range.

Here, Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at whether the Magpies were worthy of a win that takes them into the top half of the table.

Match statistics

Newcastle
Shots: 14
On target: 3
Possession: 36%
Corners: 7
Fouls: 13

Liverpool
Shots: 6
On target: 3
Possession: 64%
Corners: 2
Fouls: 8

Was the result fair?

Neither side exactly shone this afternoon, but if anyone deserved to win the match then it was Newcastle. The hosts offered more going forward - although that wasn't hard - and ended the match with eight more shots than the visitors. In truth, it was a poor game overall, which is not something you can often say about a fixture that has seen more goals than any other in Premier League history.

The first half was one of the worst 45 minutes of football you will see this season, with both sides creating a solitary chance apiece. The tempo did rise a little in the second half, particularly after the goal, but chances were still few and far between and neither keeper was tested too much.

It was the sort of match that was always going to take a moment of magic or a mistake to decide it, and it turned out to be the latter as Moreno failed to deal with the ball inside the box, and Perez was there to net a second winner in the space of a week. Certainly not a classic, but Newcastle won't care having picked up a deserved three points.

Newcastle's performance

What a difference a month makes. Not long ago, the Magpies were languishing in the relegation zone and Alan Pardew was a dead man walking in the dugout, but suddenly they are in the top half and one of the form teams in the division. It is now three league wins in a row - four in all competitions - and it was clear to see that their confidence has grown because of that.

It was by no means a classic display from the hosts, but they did enough to beat a below-par Liverpool side on the day. Their build-up play was often laboured and slow, and for the most part Liverpool coped comfortably with them going forward, but the Magpies still managed to create more chances than the visitors, with Remy Cabella missing a glorious opportunity to double their lead.

Defensively, they were very sound, and that will please Pardew almost as much as the three points. It is another clean sheet for his side, and in truth Tim Krul very rarely looked like conceding. Liverpool were kept at bay for the vast majority of the match, and when they did shoot they were often limited to efforts from outside the box. They have now beaten and kept clean sheets against last season's top two in their last two games, and things are looking a lot brighter for Pardew right now.

Liverpool's performance

If there was one accusation you couldn't make about Liverpool last season, it was that they were toothless in attack. That was exactly the case this afternoon, however, with the Reds struggling to create anything going forward throughout the 90 minutes. Their best chance of the game came from a corner, and they can have no complaints at having drawn a blank away from home in the league for the first time in almost a year.

Like Newcastle, the passing was slow and lacked any incisiveness or purpose. The first half passed by almost without incident, and while they did improve slightly after the break, they still didn't do enough to really trouble the Newcastle defence at any point. Steven Gerrard did attempt to grab the game by the scruff of the neck, but the likes of Mario Balotelli and Raheem Sterling were peripheral figures throughout.

It is the latest in a string of lacklustre displays from the Reds, and the return of Daniel Sturridge from injury cannot come soon enough. They remain on just 14 points this season, and should they lose to Chelsea next weekend then they could find themselves 15 points off the pace. That would be an unassailable gap, so Brendan Rodgers needs to get his side performing quickly.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Moussa Sissoko: When Moussa Sissoko is at his best, he is arguably Newcastle's most important player. The athletic Frenchman provides a vital link between midfield and attack, and his driving runs can cause defences problems, as they did today. It was his play that forced the mistake from Moreno, which in turn led to the winner, and the midfielder was a handful for the Liverpool defence.

Biggest gaffe

Cabella deserves a mention here for his miss in the second half, but there really is only one winner. Moreno dallied on the ball for too long inside his own box, much like he did against Manchester City earlier in the campaign, and Perez took full advantage. It was a tough ball for the Spaniard to deal with, admittedly, but he still should have done a lot better.

Referee performance

Andre Marriner had a decent game today, with one or two big calls that he got right. There were a couple of ambitious penalty appeals and two nasty challenges in particular, but the official made the right decision each time.

What next?

Newcastle: Newcastle will look to make it five wins in a row when they face West Bromwich Albion next Sunday.

Liverpool: The Reds face the daunting prospect of a trip to the Bernabeu to take on Real Madrid on Tuesday before hosting Chelsea at Anfield next Sunday.

Newcastle United's Spanish striker Ayoze Perez (L) celebrates scoring the opening goal with Newcastle United's French midfielder Remy Cabella (R) during the English Premier League football match against Liverpool on November 1, 2014
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