West Ham travelled to Newcastle with dreams very much alive of finishing in the top-four.
However, those dreams were in tatters after a nightmare 45 minutes at St James' Park.
The home side made a strong start to the match and took the lead after 36 minutes thanks to a comedy own goal from Issa Diop. However, seconds before the goal, West Ham defender Craig Dawson lunged into a tackle despite already being on a yellow card.
Referee Kevin Friend played advantage which saw Diop inadvertently get in Lukasz Fabianski's way and flick the ball into his own net.
As Newcastle celebrated, Friend brandished Dawson a second yellow card for his late tackle.
An own goal and a sending off within the space of seconds.
Five minutes later, Newcastle were 2-0 ahead as Joelington rose highest from a corner,
West Ham now face a huge battle to get anything out of the game.
David Moyes' side will remain in fourth despite a loss against Newcastle on 55 points.
However, Chelsea will have a game in hand and sit just one point behind them. Meanwhile, Liverpool would have the opportunity to go level on points with West Ham if they beat Leeds on Monday and boast a better goal difference.
Before the match against Newcastle, Moyes spoke about the possibility of leading West Ham to the Champions League and claimed it would eclipse the same feat he achieved at Everton.
"This would be a bigger achievement because I have only been at West Ham for a year, this is my first full season," said Moyes.
"Last year when I came it was to avoid relegation. And even the time before it was to avoid relegation. So this was really the first time I have been given the chance to take the club from a pre-season to the end of the season. And I have got them challenging around the top.
"The reason why I would say this one is because I think I had been at Everton about three or four years when we got to the Champions League. We finished above Liverpool that year – we finished fourth, they finished fifth – and Liverpool went on to win the Champions League. So it gives you an idea of the quality of the teams.
"We can find this year we are competing with Chelsea and they could go on to win the Champions League, for example. It is just the level of the Premier League and the teams.
"For most of the seasons at Everton, that was the case. We did not always play in Europe and make the Champions League, that's for sure. But we tended to be challenging at the top and that is my aim with West Ham.
"We can try to challenge up around the top eight places if possible. That will not always be done, because at Everton we dropped out as well over the period.
"But if you are going to go on a journey and have some growth you are going to have times that are not going so quick. We have had a really good spurt growth this year and I hope that we can keep it going."News Now - Sport News