Liverpool handed huge incentive as Man City stutter against Rafa’s Newcastle

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Rafa Benitez is a huge favourite in Liverpool anyway, but on Tuesday night the former Reds manager gave them a small reminder of why.

took on Newcastle at St. James’ Park as they looked to edge away at Liverpool’s four point lead at the top of the Premier League table.

Benitez’s side trailed Manchester City at half-time, only to stage a dramatic late comeback and beat Pep Guardiola’s side 2-1.

The result comes as a huge boost for the Reds, with this being City’s first real chance of applying pressure to Liverpool and squeezing the gap at the top to one point.

For a while, it looked to be going that way. City took the lead in the opening 24 seconds as Raheem Sterling floated a cross to David Silva, who managed to find Sergio Aguero.

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Image: Stu Forster via Getty Images

The Argentine international smashed a volley past Martin Dubravka to put Guardiola’s side in to the lead as Newcastle looked lacklustre and clearly outclassed.

However, Salomon Rondon scored a shock leveller just after the hour mark as he became the first player in seven games to score against City.

Isaac Hayden, on the edge of the Manchester City penalty area, sent in a hopeful header back in the box, with Rondon demonstrating his physical prowess to volley in to the ground and in to the back of City’s net.

And then, with ten minutes remaining, Fernandinho carelessly lost possession inside his own penalty box and clipped Sean Longstaff to give away a spot kick.

Ritchie stepped up to smash a powerful left-footed strike under the body of Emerson, as Newcastle held on for a memorable 2-1 victory.

Image: Stu Forster via Getty Images

Benitez’s name was loudly sung around the stadium at full-time, with the win being a real coup for a relegation threatened Newcastle side.

Liverpool, who are in action against at Anfield on Wednesday night, now have the chance to extend their lead over City to seven points.

The Reds were already in a favourable position after 23 games, but City’s latest result combined with a win over Claude Puel’s side could be a huge step in the hunt for the title.

Liverpool vs Leicester kicks off at 8pm and you can keep up with all the drama via LFC Globe’s live match-day coverage.

Tottenham vs Liverpool kicks off at 8pm on June 1 and you can keep up with all the action from the Champions League final via our live match-day coverage.