We were wrong yesterday, because Demba Ba did not score a goal.
Ba in action yesterday – those orange shirts looked good
But his Senegal team-mate Papiss Cisse showed he is more than adept at scoring, with another two goals in that first half, which were both set up by the mercurial Frenchman Ben Arfa, who had one of his best games for the club.
He set up Cisse in the 6th and 34 minutes from the left wing, and scored a goal himself after 12 minutes, for a great all around performance.
Newcastle played in an unfamiliar 4-3-3 formation yesterday with Ba, Cisse and Ben Arfa up front and they ran riot in that first half, with some slick passing when they broke rapidly from defense.
It was all too much for the West Brom defense and Newcastle has a 3-0 lead at half time.
It was only a mistake between goalkeeper Tim Krul and Mike Williamson after 52 minutes, that prevented Newcastle from keeping a second successive clean sheet.
After the first half Newcastle defended stoutly without Coloccini, who sustained a hamstring pull, and the display of James Perch at center-back gives us confidence we can stretch our winning streak to three games against Liverpool next Sunday afternoon, in another top game for Newcastle.
Demba Ba talked on the Newcastle web-site after the game, and said it was great to play in such an attacking way:
“It was nice. With three forwards, you have one striker on each side, and it just allowed us to be more dangerous.”
“But then in the second half we defended well and we had to, because we knew they were going to come back with another mentality. So we just kept our shape and our discipline.”
“This was right up there.” “We’re very happy. We had a good game plan which we needed to stick to in order to win, and now we have 50 points with eight games to go still.”
“Now we’re just looking forward to next Sunday and trying to get the win so we have even more points between Liverpool and us.”
The away win was similar to Newcastle’s great 3-1 win at Stoke City last year, when Demba Ba got a hat-trick, and we wonder how many goals we can score in some of our remaining games, once Ba hits the goal trail again?
We could do with some big wins to improve our goal difference which is now +2, but is still the lowest of any side in the top eight.
We want to see more performances like Newcastle gave yesterday at West Brom – it was a joy to watch.