Premier League: Cardiff City 1 Newcastle United 2
By Football News
Loic Remy turned in a sensational first-half display to fire Newcastle United to a 2-1 away victory over Cardiff City on Saturday.
The French striker put his side ahead with a 20-yard strike after 30 minutes, before doubling the lead with a superb side-footed finish after a David Marshall parry soon after.
Cardiff clawed one back after the break through Peter Odemwingie, but could not make amends for a first half which saw them dominated by the visitors.
The victory was Newcastle's seventh consecutive win over their Welsh opponents - a record that stretches back to 1981.
Cardiff were unchanged from the side that picked up a 2-1 victory at Fulham last weekend, meaning there was no place for former Newcastle man Craig Bellamy, while Alan Pardew made three changes from Monday night's breathless 3-2 defeat to Everton.
Yohan Cabaye was reintroduced to the starting line-up alongside Mike Williamson and Papiss Cisse, with Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Vurnon Anita and Hatem Ben Arfa dropped to the bench.
Fraizer Campbell put visiting goalkeeper Tim Krul under pressure in the opening minutes, but squandered a chance to capitalise on the Dutchman's careless run off his goal-line by slipping at the crucial moment.
But, as Newcastle began to settle into the tie, Marshall showed lightning-quick reactions to superbly deny Remy from close range before the Frenchman's weak effort was gratefully gathered by the Scot.
However, after half an hour, Remy found the net at the third attempt. The Frenchman picked up the ball on the left wing, before bringing it inside and drilling a low strike beyond a fully-stretched Marshall from 20 yards.
The QPR loanee doubled his side's lead eight minutes later - reacting quickest to a parried Cisse effort to guide the ball into the bottom-right corner of the net from the edge of the penalty area for a fifth goal in his last three Premier League appearances.
The visitors could have been three up before the break, but Cabaye's audacious 30-yard free kick struck the bottom of the right post.
Malky McKay brought on last week's goal hero Jordon Mutch for the second half, and his presence in the Cardiff midfield proved the catalyst for an improved second-half display.
The hosts were able to pull one back just before the hour mark. Aron Gunnarsson showed good pace down the left, before finding Odemwingie in space in the area, and the striker showed great patience in waiting for the perfect opportunity to send the ball beyond Krul.
Newcastle had a chance to restore their lead just moments later when Moussa Sissoko attempted to apply the finish to a promising counter-attacking move, but Marshall was on hand to deny the midfielder.
There was some outrage among the visiting fans as Remy was withdrawn with 20 minutes left to play, although the in-form forward had taken a knock.
Mutch had a late chance to pull the hosts level, but Krul got down well to smother, before claims of handball against Andrew Taylor at the other end were waved away by referee Kevin Friend as the hosts slipped to their second consecutive home defeat.