Sir Alex Ferguson says Man Utd will not panic

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Ferguson credits "fantastic goals"

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson insists his side will not panic after a 3-0 defeat at Newcastle.

The loss was United's second in five days, coming after their shock 3-2 home defeat against Blackburn.

"We have the experience to cope, we need to get the show on the road," said Ferguson, whose side are three points behind leaders Manchester City.

"It's not a time for panic. Losing a game at this time of the year can sometimes happen."

The Scot conceded that City were now in the driving seat at the top of the Premier League. Roberto Mancini's side moved to 48 points after their 3-0 win over Liverpool on Tuesday.

"Advantage to them, of course," admitted 70-year-old Ferguson.

The Old Trafford side will also be wary of third-placed Tottenham, who closed the gap to three points after their 1-0 victory over West Brom.

The London side will draw level on points with United if they win their game in hand against Everton next week.

The Magpies took the lead at the Sports Direct Arena through striker Demba Ba, before Yohan Cabaye added a magnificent second from a free-kick after the break.

Phil Jones' own goal late in the match sealed a memorable win for Alan Pardew's men.

"We started reasonably well," added Ferguson, whose side face local rivals City in the FA Cup on Sunday.

"But they scored a fantastic goal and it really picked everyone up in the stadium. The second was a killer for us.

"The story of the game was they had two fantastic strikes which put them in the driving seat."

Pardew, meanwhile, believes the scoreline was a fair reflection of his side's dominance.

"We won because we controlled the game in terms of what we wanted to do, we wouldn't let them play," said the Magpies boss, after the club recorded their first win over United since 2001.

"Physically and aerially we had an advantage. It was a great victory for us - we beat the champions 3-0 and we probably deserved that scoreline.

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Pardew hails 'good night' for Newcastle

"You've got to have brave players who are going to push on - we had some outstanding performances individually."

Leading scorer Ba scored his 15th goal of the campaign to set the Magpies on their way, but will now head off to the Africa Cup of Nations to play for Senegal.

However, Pardew believes his side will cope with the loss.

"You see the guys who came off the bench contributed," he added.

"Leon Best in particular stepped up to the plate when we lost Andy Carroll [to Liverpool in January 2011].

"We knew it was going to happen and we accept that."

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