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Remy double eases pressure on Pardew
LOIC REMY eased the pressure on Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew after his double sealed a crucial 2-1 win at Cardiff City.
Remy struck twice in the first half and the Magpies managed to hold on despite late pressure from the Bluebirds.
The win lifts Newcastle up to tenth in the table and will ease the pressure on the Magpies boss, whose future on Tyneside has been the centre of speculation this week.
Pardew was already under pressure going into today’s game, but that was heightened when the teamsheet emerged without the names of Hatem Ben Arfa and Vurnon Anita, who were dropped to the bench following Monday night’s defeat to Everton.
As expected, Mike Williamson came in for Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, but in the opening few minutes a defensive mix up almost cost Newcastle.
Fabricio Coloccini and Tim Krul failed to deal with a long bal into the Magpies’ box, almost letting former Sunderland striker Fraizer Campbell in on goal.
It was an edgy start, but what followed was complete domination from the visitors, who kept possession, passed well and made use of the extra space Cardiff were affording them.
Loic Remy’s goal have been the bright spark in what has been a difficult few weeks for Pardew and the Frenchman almost added to his tally from point blank range, only to be denied by David Marshall.
The hosts’ keeper was called into action again moments later this time to tip Moussa Sissoko’s long range drive over the bar.
Remy squandered another great chance midway through the first half when he couldn’t connect with Mathieu Debuchy’s pull back properly, leaving Marshall to collect the ball with ease.
It looked like it could be one of those days for Remy, but on the half hour the loan man put Newcastle ahead in style when he ran from just inside the hosts’ half, cut inside and unleashed a low effort that sneaked inside Marshall’s near post.
Eight minutes later the visitors doubled their lead and it was their man of the moment again.
Yohan Cabaye picked out Papiss Cisse in the area and after forcing a save out of Marshall, the Bluebirds’ keeper could only parry the ball to Remy, who placed the ball into the bottom corner.
It could have been three before the break when Cabaye caught Marshall off guard from a free-kick, but his effort hit the post.
Newcastle were cruising before the break, but Cardiff came out for the second half a different side and 13 minutes after the restart, the hosts pulled one back.
Williamson, given a rare chance to start, was caught ball watching by Whittingham, who raced passed him down the line before picking out the striker, who cut inside and fired in.
It changed the complex of the game completely and all of a sudden the visitors found themselves on the back foot.
Pardew’s men seemed quite happy to sit back and hit Cardiff on the counter and they almost scored a third when Remy broke through the middle and played in Sissoko, but again Marshall came to the rescue denying the Frenchman with his legs.
Malky Mackay introduced Craig Bellamy with 25 minutes to go and the former Newcastle striker almost equalised after Jordan Mutch played in the Welshman, but Krul saved.
The Magpies were holding on and they had a good shout for a penalty turned down when Anthony Taylor handled inside the area from a Magpies cross.
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