Alarm bells ring loud for under-fire United boss David Moyes

United lose their second straight home game, this time to Newcastle, as fans begin to show their frustration on their embattled manager

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 08 December, 2013, 12:12am
UPDATED : Sunday, 08 December, 2013, 1:25am

Manchester United's dismal season lurched into crisis yesterday after a 1-0 loss at home to Newcastle United condemned the champions to their fifth defeat of the campaign.

Yohan Cabaye's goal just after the hour gave Newcastle their first victory at Old Trafford since 1972 and consigned United to back-to-back home defeats in the league for the first time since May 2002.

Luis Suarez-led Liverpool, meanwhile, romped home 4-1 over West Ham United, and struggling Stoke surprised Chelsea 3-2.

Having lost 1-0 to Everton on Wednesday, United have now lost as many games as they did in the whole of last season's title-winning campaign and David Moyes' side could fall 15 points behind leaders Arsenal before the weekend is out.

"I'm disappointed with the result," Moyes told BT Sport.

"I think there were bits of the game where we needed a bit of luck to go for us and to take our opportunities a bit better, and that didn't happen."

However, the United manager refused to admit defeat in his side's title defence, saying: "I stand firm that we'll be very close to it and I hope we're in and around it when it comes to the end of the season."

Visiting boss Alan Pardew was delighted with the result. Pardew, who has guided Newcastle to five wins in six league games on a climb to sixth place, plotted a perfect plan for his team who subdued their hosts, controlled possession and seized victory with aplomb.

"It's one of the top moments for me in my time here - it's been 41 years we've been waiting," he told BT Sport.

"It was a magnificent performance. I know we won't get the headlines because of United and poor old David Moyes.

"But we deserve them because our players were magnificent. I asked them to play differently today, to keep the ball, and we did that.

"We made it difficult for them and it's a great day for us."

United were without Wayne Rooney through suspension, but they restored Robin van Persie to their starting XI after a four-game absence with a groin strain and saw Phil Jones test visiting keeper Tim Krul with an early shot.

Newcastle's five-man midfield frustrated United, though, and it was the visitors who came closest to breaking the deadlock before half-time, with David de Gea thwarting Mathieu Debuchy twice in first-half stoppage time.

United attacked the game with renewed vigour in the second period, but they saw Krul save from Javier Hernandez and Adnan Januzaj before a header from Patrice Evra hit the post.

Newcastle hit the champions with a sucker-punch in the 61st minute, with Moussa Sissoko galloping down the right flank after winning a duel with Evra before cutting the ball back for Cabaye to sweep home.

In other matches, Crystal Palace beat Cardiff City 2-0. Southampton kept Manchester City to a 1-1 draw, while Norwich ensured they got three points, beating West Bromwich Albion 2-0.

Agence France-Presse, Reuters