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Magpies ruin Gerrard's perfect week

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Liverpool's Steven Gerrard celebrates scoring his side's first goal from the penalty spot at St James' Park. Picture credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire.

Liverpool's Steven Gerrard celebrates scoring his side's first goal from the penalty spot at St James' Park. Picture credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire.

Liverpool's Steven Gerrard celebrates scoring his side's first goal from the penalty spot at St James' Park. Picture credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire.

STEVEN GERRARD left Newcastle bemoaning a frustrating end to what might have been the perfect week.

Four days after leading England to the World Cup finals in Brazil, the 33-year-old midfielder claimed his 100th Premier League goal at St James' Park.

However, the 10-man Magpies ensured Gerrard did not have things all his own way as they battled their way to a hard-earned 2-2 draw.

The Reds briefly topped the league table until Arsenal and Chelsea overhauled them on Saturday evening, and that proved some consolation.

"If someone had said to me in pre-season that we would be top of the league after this amount of games, of course I would have been really happy," said Gerrard.

"But I'm slightly frustrated that we couldn't take maximum points. If we had got the win, it would have been the perfect week.

"But I always search for perfection, so I'm sadly a little bit down that we haven't taken maximum points."

Liverpool found themselves behind after 23 minutes when Newcastle midfielder Yohan Cabaye beat goalkeeper Simon Mignolet from 30 yards with a dipping, swerving shot.

However, the game changed five minutes before the break when Luis Suarez was pulled back by Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa inside the box.

Referee Andre Marriner immediately awarded a penalty and produced a red card, and Gerrard exacted full revenge by sending the resulting spot-kick low to Tim Krul's right to level and complete his century.

But Newcastle were not done and the 10 men restored their lead within 12 minutes of the restart when 22-year-old Paul Dummett, a left-back who was drafted into central defence from the bench following Yanga-Mbiwa's untimely exit, side-footed a Cabaye free-kick home at the far post.

The Reds' response was concerted and sustained and they eventually got their reward with 18 minutes remaining when Suarez produced the perfect cross for Daniel Sturridge to head past Krul from close range.

Gerrard was delighted with his own personal milestone, but admitted he would have swapped it for another two points.

He said: "It's a good milestone for me and a great personal achievement, but I'd certainly swap the goal for two extra points, that's for sure."


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