Newcastle substitute Joe Willock scored a dramatic but deserved 95th-minute equaliser to deny Liverpool a much-needed win in their pursuit of Champions League football.
Mohamed Salah’s early goal appeared to have put the champions on track for a vital win as they chase a top-four finish at the end of a disappointing season.
But despite dominating early on, Jurgen Klopp’s side were unable to finish the game off and were given a lifeline they failed to take when Callum Wilson’s last-minute equaliser was ruled out for handball.
Steve Bruce’s much-improved visitors kept up the late pressure and were rewarded when Willock fired in for the third match in a row with the last kick of the game to strengthen their own position at the bottom of the table.
Reds fans must now look on as West Ham and Chelsea – both a point ahead of their sixth-placed side – meet later on Saturday.
Liverpool fade again
It was already a season to forget for Liverpool with a meek title defence and trophyless campaign, even before the off-field distraction of this week’s aborted interest in the European Super League.
There were muted protests against the club’s owners as the team coach arrived at Anfield but the players themselves were loudly cheered and the disruption was nothing like that seen at Arsenal on Friday night.
Salah’s superb early goal, spinning to control a clearance and smash in what is – remarkably – Liverpool’s first first-half goal at home in 2021, seemed to set them on track for a win that would calm matters on and off the pitch.
Jurgen Klopp lined up Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota alongside Salah in an attacking line-up and they all had chances, with Magpies keeper Martin Dubravka making eight saves in a solid if unspectacular showing.
But as the game wore on Liverpool’s intensity and drive faded, an all-too-familiar sight in recent months.
Newcastle’s late rally meant two more dropped points for the home side and a disappointing season may yet end without even a Champions League place next term.
More to follow.
- 3FabinhoBooked at 89mins
- 19KabakBooked at 9mins
- 6Thiago AlcántaraSubstituted forJonesat 77′minutes
- 20JotaSubstituted forMilnerat 58′minutes
- 46R Williams
- 76N Williams
- 18FernándezBooked at 16mins
- 2ClarkSubstituted forWillockat 64′minutes
- 24AlmirónSubstituted forGayleat 85′minutes
- 36S Longstaff
- 9JoelintonSubstituted forWilsonat 60′minutes
Match ends, Liverpool 1, Newcastle United 1.
Second Half ends, Liverpool 1, Newcastle United 1.
Goal! Liverpool 1, Newcastle United 1. Joseph Willock (Newcastle United) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Dwight Gayle with a headed pass.
VAR Decision: No Goal Liverpool 1-0 Newcastle United.
Hand ball by Callum Wilson (Newcastle United).
Attempt saved. Callum Wilson (Newcastle United) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Allan Saint-Maximin with a through ball.
Attempt missed. Joseph Willock (Newcastle United) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses the top left corner. Assisted by Matt Ritchie with a cross.
Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Fabinho.
Fabinho (Liverpool) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Fabinho (Liverpool).
Allan Saint-Maximin (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by James Milner (Liverpool).
Joseph Willock (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Substitution, Newcastle United. Dwight Gayle replaces Miguel Almirón because of an injury.
Attempt saved. James Milner (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.
Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Joseph Willock.
Attempt blocked. James Milner (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.
Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Martin Dubravka.
Attempt saved. Sadio Mané (Liverpool) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Trent Alexander-Arnold.
Ozan Kabak (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.