The Magpies were swept aside on Saturday afternoon by Liverpool, who picked up all three points after netting just the one goal despite 11 shots on target – but that’s all they needed to see off Eddie Howe’s men.
Will Newcastle finish in the top half?
However, the goal wasn’t scored without controversy, as former Newcastle midfielder James Milner appeared to go in rough on Schar inside the Newcastle half, with Liverpool putting the ball in the back of the net moments later.
On later viewing, it appears that Andre Marriner decided that Milner got enough of the ball to let play carry on, and former top-flight referee Gallagher was speaking live on Sky Sports about the incident and claimed that the decision ‘set the tone for the weekend’, suggesting that Milner put in a ‘really good tackle’.
He said: “I don’t think this is a foul. This was a 12.30 game on Saturday morning, sets a precedent for the weekend.
“I think that’s a really good tackle. I think he [Milner] wins the ball and then Schar goes into him – that’s why he goes over.
“Not a foul, for me. I think that set the tone for the weekend.”
TIF Thoughts on the Milner challenge…
While not many Newcastle fans will be able to argue with Milner getting the ball fairly and that it was Schar who ended up kicking Milner, they will be hoping that this standard of officiating is carried on through, as the precedent has now been set, as Gallagher has claimed.
This explanation from Gallagher that he believes the challenge was a good one by Milner may not surprise many Newcastle fans, but the fact that the level of what is considered a foul is based on what happens in the early kick-off could be seen as slightly concerning, as the bar should be set at the start of the season to ensure of a level playing field.