Newcastle beats Bolton 2-0 in Premier League
Updated: December 26, 2011, 13:00
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BOLTON, England(AP) Newcastle broke out of its recent slump by scoring two goals in a two-minute span in the second half to secure a 2-0 victory over struggling Bolton in the Premier League on Monday.
Hatem Ben Arfa scored his first goal in more than a year in the 69th minute and Demba Ba added the second two minutes later to end a run of five straight losses for the Magpies.
Both sides struggled to create chances in the first half, although Newcastle's Ryan Taylor drew a good save from Jussi Jaaskelainen with a 14th-minute free kick. Bolton nearly took the lead six minutes before halftime, as when Martin Petrov's free kick was heading for the bottom corner until Tim Krul thrust out a hand.
Leon Best had the final chance of the half when he was picked out by Ryan Taylor's corner but he could only manage a glancing header and guided the ball well wide.
Bolton's season was summed up by a sequence of play in the 55th minute. First Robinson found Ngog with a good ball down the left and Klasnic eventually picked up the striker's cross-shot only to trip himself up as he looked to get a shot away.
Bolton looked more of a threat going forward and Petrov lashed an effort just wide of the far post.
But in the 69th minute they went behind as Newcastle at last put together a move of real quality, ending with Taylor crossing for Ben Arfa to crisply volley in only his second goal for the club and his first since September 2010, shortly before he suffered a broken leg against Manchester City.
And two minutes later the game was all but over as poor defending from Paul Robinson let in Obertan down the right and his cross was clipped in by Ba despite the best efforts of Gary Cahill.
It was Ba's 14th goal of the season, and he almost added another moments later but this time Jaaskelainen was quickly off his line to block.
Boos rang out at the final whistle, with the result meaning Bolton stays three points from safety and now only one point above bottom side Blackburn.