Manchester United loses their second match in a row as Newcastle shut them out 3-0 at the Sports Direct Arena in Newcastle. Newcastle was able to take advantage of the fact that Man United only had three defenders fit to play as the team was forced to play midfielder Antonio Valencia in the back four.
The proof is in the statistics as Newcastle had more shots on goal than Man U (5-3), but had less possession of the ball (60% - 40%). Plus, it also helps to have Demba Ba on your team. In twenty matches, he has already scored 15 goals. He started off the scoring in the 33rd minute as he was able to win a long ball. Then, he kicked the ball past Man United goalie Anders Linegaard.
The score remained 1-0 until the start of the second half when Newcastle caught Man U off guard. Two minutes after the intermission, midfielderrocketed in a free kick from 25 yards out. For the rest of the half, Manchester United continued to attack, but they could not score a goal. However, they scored a goal for Newcastle in the 90th minute when defender Phil Jones accidentally headed a long ball into his own net.
The win gives Newcastle a little bit of cushion at 7th place with 33 points. Manchester United falls to second place at 45 points, three points behind their rival Manchester City. Here are the starting lineups from the match. Both teams played with a 4-4-2 formation.
Newcastle United -- Goalkeeper: Krul. Defenders: Coloccini, Williamson, Santon, Simpson. Midfielders: Cabaye, Tiote, Gutierrez, Taylor. Forwards: Ba, Ameobi.
Manchester United -- Goalkeeper: Lindegaard. Defenders: Jones, Ferdinand, Evra, Valencia. Midfielders: Giggs, Carrick, Park, Nani. Forwards: Rooney, Berbatov.