It was almost as if Steve McClaren had pinned the pre-match views of Alan Shearer on the dressing room door.

The Newcastle legend had slaughtered the players after each recent disaster, pointing to the lack of effort and pride as major factors in the United defeats.

Sunday morning found Alan Shearer tearing into the Newcastle players pre-match, challenging them to show that pride in both the shirt and themselves that had been clearly missing.

Alan Shearer writing in The Sun:

“It is almost as if the pressure of the situation as they face a relegation dog- fight is making them crumble rather than discovering some inner bottle.

Colback claimed this week that contrary to what I have been saying, there is actually “a plan” when Newcastle go into games. Well, I would love to know what it is.

I hope the Newcastle players have not been hidden away from it (criticism). They need to know just what is being said about them.

If they have read it and have an ounce of pride in themselves and the shirt they are wearing, then we should see an improvement.

Yes, there is every chance they will lose. But if they lose once again in the pathetic way they did at home to Leicester and away to Palace, then Newcastle fans will not stand for it.

This time it would not be just a drubbing but a humiliation — for they are facing a Liverpool side on the rise.       

They had better not dare fold like they did in the last two games. The fans simply do not deserve it.’

Whatever the factor(s) was/were that brought about the change in attitude and subsequent result, the former Newcastle number nine was happy to congratulate the players after today’s Newcastle 2 Liverpool 0 result.

Alan Shearer saying on his Twitter account:

“Wow what a result. When you’re committed and work hard, the rest follows. Great win at last. Well done @NUFC!!”

(To view the player ratings by fans and to add your own go HERE)

(To read the instant Newcastle fan/writer reaction go HERE)