Newcastle United's chances of Premier League survival were hit by yet another blow today, as Eddie Howe's Bournemouth came away with all 3 points in a miserable day for Steve McClaren at St James' Park.
It was a must win game for Newcastle, Steve McClaren's side found themselves lying precariously in 19th prior to kick off, despite spending £30m on new players in January.
Eddie Howe's Bournemouth were without Junior Stanislas, who is ruled out until April with a hamstring injury, which meant the Cherries had to start with an attacking trio of Max Gradel, Joshua King and Benik Afobe.
Newcastle's desperation was clear from the start and after a couple of misplaced passes early on, the St James' Park faithful were quick to show their disgruntled frustration.
It was Gradel who almost broke the deadlock after 5 minutes, a well-worked corner kick from the right cannoned into a wall of players before Gradel's shot hit one of his own players before dropping agonisingly just wide of the post.
Newcastle nerves seemed to be getting the better of them as Bournemouth continued to attack in the early stages, Benik Afobe came close in the 8th minute but his shot also went narrowly over Elliott's crossbar.
Steve McClaren's side slowly grew into the game, their first shot of the game came on the 15 minute mark when Ayoze Perez's strike went just over the crossbar. However despite their first shot on goal, Newcastle were still second best to a Bournemouth side that had managed 62% possession in the opening 20 minutes.
15' - Good first-time strike by Ayoze Perez as Newcastle counter but it's over the bar. Goalless at St. James' Park. #NUFC— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) March 5, 2016
And it was Bournemouth that eventually took the lead after 27 minutes. Superb battling play from Afobe outside the box saw the ball played to Joshua King, King whipped in a powerful cross which ricocheted off Steven Taylor's shin, stranding Elliot in the Newcastle goal to make it 1-0 to the Cherries.
Newcastle have now conceded 114 goals since the start of last season; 6 more than any other Premier League side. pic.twitter.com/mHJ6F6w0PN— Squawka Football (@Squawka) March 5, 2016
3000 travelling Bournemouth supporters cheered every completed Bournemouth pass as Newcastle failed to get a hold of the game, much to the frustration of some very concerned Geordie supporters.
After scoring an own-goal Steven Taylor took it upon himself to make the difference before half-time, the defender made a marauding run up the field, controlled the ball expertly before lashing his shot just inches wide of Boruc's post.
Half-time: Newcastle 0-1 Bournemouth
Newcastle made one substitution at half time, bringing on the Serbian Mitrovic for Riviere, who had by all accounts a quiet first half.
However the change made little effect as Newcastle struggled to get hold of the ball in midfield. A solid strike from Adam Smith was smartly saved by Rob Elliot soon after the restart.
Newcastle eventually showed their first signs of promise in the 2nd half on the 60th minute, Mitrovic found himself in space on the edge of the Bournemouth box, but his attempted curler ended a few yards wide of Bournemouth's post.
Janmaat almost managed to do what Mitrovic couldn't. The right-back's inspired run and combination with Shelvey ended in a smart shot from Janmat, however Boruc was equal to the threat and the Newcastle right-back's strike was pushed out for a corner.
Bournemouth capitalised on Newcastle's wasteful play in midfield, with promising build up play from the Cherries, which saw Joshua King left in the box completely unmarked, the 24-year old performed a wonderful swivel turn before smashing the ball into the roof of Rob Elliot's net to make it 2-0.
The goal left many Newcastle fans heading for the exits while 3,000 travelling Bournemouth supporters made all of the noise at St James' Park.
Newcastle were handed a lifeline 10 minutes later through Ayoze Perez, Jonjo Shelvey put in an inch-perfect ball before Perez calmly put it past Boruc to make it reduce the deficit to 2-1. The goal set up a nervy final 10 minutes for both sides, especially for Newcastle.
Rob Elliot produced another fine save at the other end, this time from a drilled effort from Marc Pugh.
Bournemouth confirmed the result in the 92nd minute as Charlie Daniels powered forward on the left before dispatching a low drive to the right of Rob Elliot in the Newcastle goal to round off a terrible day for Steve McClaren.
The full-time whistle was met with a chorus of boos from the Newcastle faithful, who need to see points on the board soon if they are to survive in this competitive Premier League season.
Newcastle XI vs Bournemouth: Elliot, Janmaat, Taylor, Lascelles, Dummen, Colback, Shelvey, Sissoko, Wijnaldum, Perez; Riviere— EPL NEWS (@PLFutbol) March 5, 2016
Bournemouth XI vs Newcastle: Boruc, Smith, Francis, Cook, Daniels, Ritchie, Gosling, Surman, Gradel, King, Afobe— Christopher Alex (@Kristova_Alex) March 5, 2016