QUEEN'S PARK RANGERS 1 Remy pen 11 NEWCASTLE UNITED 2 Ben Arfa pen 18, Gouffran 34
There will be no repeat of the trauma of four years ago for Newcastle United. The growing sense of sick panic was cured last night with an away victory which moves them up to 41 points and guarantees Premier League safety.
Newcastle probably could not have hoped for more hospitable opponents than Queen's Park Rangers. It was only the north-east club's second away league win of the season but then they have waited all year to face opponents this poor.
So the dreaded drop has been averted and Newcastle have just managed to find a toe-hold on one of the bottom rungs of the Premier League ladder they were slipping down.
"I'm very pleased," said a relieved Newcastle manager Alan Pardew, "it was an important game for the football club - because of the extra money for staying in the Premier League - and massive for north-east football that we're a Premier League team."
Rangers made Newcastle look like a model of cohesion, spirit and fluency. It was always possible that already-doomed QPR might play free from the fear of relegation that has been afflicting Newcastle. That seemed to be the case for about 10 minutes as the home team started briskly and even went ahead through Loc Rmy's penalty, after Junior Hoilett was pulled back by Mathieu Debuchy.
But from then on they were abject, giving away two goals to a grateful Newcastle and looking nearly as disjointed, muddled and incompetent as they have done all season. "Once they scored, we seemed to lose everything and we were very poor after that," said the QPR manager, Harry Redknapp, a man who knows this job is not going to get any easier.
Both Newcastle goals came from Jose Bosingwa errors and he was subjected to relentless abuse from the stands. One season of frustration was poured out by home fans at Bosingwa - and Stphane Mbia - both seen as the embodiment of the over-paid, under- motivated players who have taken Rangers back down into the Championship.
For Newcastle's equaliser, Bosingwa needlessly pulled Hatem Ben Arfa and referee Lee Probert gave his second generous penalty of the afternoon. Ben Arfa's spot-kick found the top corner. That was bad but Newcastle's second, on 34 minutes, was worse. Bosingwa underhit a backpass to Rob Green, Jonas Gutierrez charged down the kick and Yoan Gouffran fired the ball into an empty net.
"He didn't make mistakes purposefully, he just made a couple of errors which cost us a couple of goals," said Redknapp. It was not the fiercest defence of a player that he has ever mounted.
"It wasn't going to help anyone, you can't play with that negativity around the place so I decided to change it. …