Match ends, Newcastle United 2, Liverpool 0.
Newcastle United 2-0 Liverpool
Georginio Wijnaldum inspired Newcastle to their third win of the season as they beat in-form Liverpool.
The Magpies moved above Sunderland into 18th place in the table after Wijnaldum's shot was deflected off Martin Skrtel's knee, before the Dutchman added a second in injury time.
Liverpool, who had won seven of their last eight games, were poor.
Alberto Moreno was wrongly denied by an offside flag as Reds boss Jurgen Klopp suffered a second defeat in 12 games.
But in a scrappy game which lacked quality, Newcastle achieved a much-needed victory for Steve McClaren, who admitted earlier this week that confidence at the club has been "fragile".
After conceding eight goals in their last two games, the result came courtesy of an improved defensive display from the hosts.
And in Wijnaldum, who took his tally to seven for the season following his £14.5m move from PSV Eindhoven in July, they have a player who has offered the goal-scoring threat they have been previously missing.
Did Liverpool waste chance to close on top four?
Following Liverpool's 6-1 win at Southampton in the Capital One Cup on Wednesday, Klopp's reputation at Liverpool reached new heights.
But his decision to make six alterations, including the omission of Daniel Sturridge and Divock Origi, who scored five goals at St Mary's between them, seemed to backfire.
Winger Jordon Ibe was their best outlet going forward but Christian Benteke was left isolated ahead of him and wasted a good chance from a corner, while Roberto Firmino looked a vastly inferior player to the one who tormented Manchester City two weekends ago.
Once Benteke and Firmino were replaced by Sturridge and Adam Lallana after the hour mark, Liverpool found a better rhythm to their play.
However, Sturridge, playing in only his fifth Premier League game of the season after injury, wasted a good chance to equalise and Moreno was denied a wonderful volley from an angle.
The result leaves Liverpool in seventh place, six points behind fourth-placed Manchester United.
Newcastle show resilience previously lacking
Liverpool did not reach the levels of recent weeks, when they secured away wins at Chelsea and Manchester City, but Newcastle showed a ruggedness and willingness to track back which has been in short supply this season.
Right-back Paul Dummett had a busy afternoon as he came up against the energetic Ibe, but kept the Liverpool youngster at bay, while Vernon Anita and Jack Colback were robust in central midfield.
Elsewhere, forward Siem de Jong, on his first Premier League start of the season, often tracked back to help out his team-mates which helped Newcastle set up a platform for the victory.
Liverpool were more positive once Sturridge was introduced, yet it allowed McClaren's team to sit back and break, which suited the pace of Sissoko and Wijnaldum, and they combined superbly for the second goal, which sent St James' Park into raptures.
Newcastle manager Steve McClaren on the win: "It's absolutely huge, absolutely massive. Once or twice we've taken ourselves to the brink of crisis and clawed our way back and that's what we've done today.
"We worked hard, it is so tough to get a result in this league. We've crawled off the field, we've put in so much effort. That's what we need every week."
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp: "I think we deserved a point maybe but not more because we didn't play well enough. I like to play the dirty points too - it's no problem. If Alberto's goal was given it was 1-1 then the game can change. Until then we didn't play as well as we like to.
"I have to watch the game again. We were not really in the game. We were not aggressive enough or close enough. There were good moments for pressing but we didn't do it."
Stats you need to know
- Newcastle have won four of their last six home Premier League matches against Liverpool (D1 L1), including the last two.
- The Magpies netted as many goals in this game versus Liverpool as they had in their past five Premier League games combined.
- All seven of Georginio Wijnaldum's Premier League goals for Newcastle have arrived at St James' Park.
- Martin Skrtel now has seven Premier League own goals - only Richard Dunne (10) has more (Jamie Carragher also has 7).
- Fabricio Coloccini made his 200th Premier League appearance. Only one other Argentine (Carlos Tevez - 202) has bettered this milestone.
Newcastle travel to Tottenham next Sunday before hosting Aston Villa the following Saturday, while Liverpool are at FC Sion in the Europa League and host West Brom next Sunday.
- 4ColbackBooked at 34minsSubstituted forGouffranat 77'minutes
- 8AnitaBooked at 60mins
- 10de JongSubstituted forPérezat 68'minutes
- 9CisséBooked at 63minsSubstituted forThauvinat 82'minutes
- 21LeivaBooked at 45mins
- 33IbeSubstituted forOrigiat 75'minutes
- 11Roberto FirminoSubstituted forSturridgeat 62'minutes
- 9BentekeSubstituted forLallanaat 62'minutes
- 4K Touré
- Andre Marriner
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Newcastle United 2, Liverpool 0.
Offside, Liverpool. Dejan Lovren tries a through ball, but Divock Origi is caught offside.
Goal! Newcastle United 2, Liverpool 0. Georginio Wijnaldum (Newcastle United) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Moussa Sissoko with a through ball.
Delay over. They are ready to continue.
Delay in match Martin Skrtel (Liverpool) because of an injury.
Attempt saved. Dejan Lovren (Liverpool) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Alberto Moreno with a cross.
Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Moussa Sissoko.
Attempt missed. Dejan Lovren (Liverpool) header from very close range misses to the left. Assisted by James Milner with a cross following a corner.
Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Vurnon Anita.
Foul by Divock Origi (Liverpool).
Paul Dummett (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Offside, Newcastle United. Florian Thauvin tries a through ball, but Ayoze Pérez is caught offside.
Substitution, Newcastle United. Florian Thauvin replaces Papiss Demba Cissé.
Offside, Liverpool. James Milner tries a through ball, but Alberto Moreno is caught offside.
Substitution, Newcastle United. Yoan Gouffran replaces Jack Colback.
Attempt missed. Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Adam Lallana with a through ball.
Substitution, Liverpool. Divock Origi replaces Jordon Ibe.
Attempt missed. Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Jordon Ibe.
Own Goal by Martin Skrtel, Liverpool. Newcastle United 1, Liverpool 0.
Attempt missed. Georginio Wijnaldum (Newcastle United) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Moussa Sissoko with a cross.
Substitution, Newcastle United. Ayoze Pérez replaces Siem de Jong.
Adam Lallana (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Jack Colback (Newcastle United).
Papiss Demba Cissé (Newcastle United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Adam Lallana (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Papiss Demba Cissé (Newcastle United).
Substitution, Liverpool. Daniel Sturridge replaces Roberto Firmino.
Substitution, Liverpool. Adam Lallana replaces Christian Benteke.
Vurnon Anita (Newcastle United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Joe Allen (Liverpool) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Foul by Vurnon Anita (Newcastle United).
Foul by Joe Allen (Liverpool).
Georginio Wijnaldum (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Martin Skrtel.
Attempt blocked. Georginio Wijnaldum (Newcastle United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Jack Colback.
Attempt missed. Joe Allen (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Roberto Firmino.
Attempt missed. Georginio Wijnaldum (Newcastle United) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Moussa Sissoko.
Foul by Dejan Lovren (Liverpool).
Papiss Demba Cissé (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.