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Newcastle rally for point

Sky Sports logo Sky Sports 23-04-2016


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Rafa Benitez's Newcastle fought back from two goals down to draw 2-2 at Liverpool and earn a potentially vital point in their fight against Premier League relegation. 

The hosts were without defender Mamadou Sakho following the announcement that he is being investigated by UEFA for a possible anti-doping violation.

However, they looked to be on their way to a comfortable victory as Daniel Sturridge scored after just 68 seconds and Adam Lallana added a fine second on the half-hour mark.

Also read: Tadic stars in Saints win

But Newcastle battled back impressively after the break, with Papiss Cisse heading home a few minutes after the restart and Jack Colback equalising with a deflected shot after 66 minutes.

While the Magpies could not go on to grab a winner, the point moves them level with Sunderland and one point behind 17th-placed Norwich.

Although Sunderland have two games in hand on the Magpies and the Canaries have one, Benitez will be buoyed by his side's battling display after they looked to be out of the game at half-time.

Perhaps with one eye on the Europa League semi-final against Villarreal on Thursday, Jurgen Klopp made five changes to his Liverpool side, with Philippe Coutinho the most notable absentee.

Newcastle stuck with the same starting XI that drew against Manchester City in midweek, but they found themselves behind after 68 seconds as Sturridge chested down a long ball, turned and then fired into the bottom corner.

Having scored four goals in their previous three matches at Anfield, the hosts were brimming with confidence and Roberto Firmino had a shot blocked before Sturridge fired over from distance.

Newcastle offered little at the other end and they fell further behind after half an hour when Lallana curled home a fine shot from just outside the box.

It could have been worse for the visitors had Chancel Mbemba not made a good recovery tackle to deny Firmino a shooting chance before penalty appeals for handball against Paul Dummett were waved away.

But Newcastle halved the deficit in the 49th minute as Simon Mignolet could not claim Vurnon Anita's hanging cross, leaving an empty net for Cisse to head into.

Also read: Liverpool’s Sakho faces Uefa probe over possible doping violation

Cisse then made a mess of a promising opening on the break as Newcastle pushed for a second.

After Roberto Firmino saw a goal chalked off for offside at the other end, the visitors equalised in the 66th minute when Andros Townsend's cross was nodded down inside the box and Colback's first-time shot deflected past Mignolet.

Neither side could grab a winner, with Lallana's low cross going untouched in the six-yard box and Coutinho having a shot blocked inside the box.

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