Brendan Rodgers dressed all in black as Luis Suárez began his 10-game suspension for biting but it was Alan Pardew who was left in sombre mood after Newcastle United were thrashed 6-0. The club had not suffered such a heavy home defeat since 1925.
Newcastle – who lost 3-0 to Sunderland in their previous game – remain deep in relegation danger in 16th place with some fans demanding Pardew's dismissal. "Of course I'm worried," said the Newcastle manager, whose players face trips to West Ham and QPR before their final home game against Arsenal. "I'm deeply disappointed that Liverpool looked so much better than us but I believe we've got enough in the dressing room to keep us up. Liverpool were faster and sharper than us. We never recovered from our start and, after going 3-0 down, we turned ragged, which isn't like one of my teams and which we can't accept."
He had no complaint about the boos which echoed round St James' Park at the final whistle. "The fans have got every right to boo," said Pardew, who knows he may not be insulated by the eight-year contract he signed in the autumn. "That performance was not good enough for Newcastle. Now we've got to show we've got the heart for this little relegation scrap we're in because other teams in it certainly have."
Liverpool proved they are far from a one-man team. "It's been a traumatic week for the club. Luis accepts he did wrong and accepts his suspension," said Rodgers, who was thrilled by an outstanding performance from Philippe Coutinho. No one doubted the desire of the 20-year-old Brazilian. "Our collective performance was very impressive, different class," he said. "Coutinho might be small in stature but he's so strong and he's got every pass in his bag. The weight of his passes are incredible."