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The BBC's Ian Dennis
"Leicester achieved their first win here in 15 years"
 real 28k

Saturday, 15 April, 2000, 19:04 GMT 20:04 UK
Foxes make fools of Magpies
Shearer missed a golden opportunity for Newcastle
Newcastle 0-2 Leicester

Goals from Leicester's Tony Cottee and Robbie Savage shocked a lacklustre Newcastle at St James Park.

The strikes came in the opening minutes of each half and added to a miserable week for the Magpies, which has now seen them lose their last three games.

Cottee struck as early as the seventh minute, when his low shot defeated Shay Given in the Newcastle goal.

And with just 51 minutes played, Savage tried his luck from just inside the 18-yard box, which gave the home 'keeper little chance.

Newcastle began the match without three of their key players, strikers Duncan Ferguson and Kevin Gallacher, and defender Nikos Dabizas.

I can't remember the last time that I was in charge of a team that had three consecutive defeats and certainly not in seven days

Magpies boss Bobby Robson

The combination have not only influenced the season so far, but had also notched up a total of 18 goals between them.

Leicester were without the major threat of Stan Collymore, and the sale of Emile Heskey to Liverpool has left Martin O'Neill's men looking lightweight in attack.

But it didn't take long for the Foxes to pounce after the kick off, when Cottee latched onto Steve Guppy's great run and cross from the left - the former Everton striker coolly slotted past Given.

Captain Alan Shearer came close for the home team after 10 minutes, when he headed over from a Didier Domi cross.

Seconds later Gary Speed should have levelled the scores, when left-back Aaron Hughes took advantage of some sloppy defensive work from Leicester.

Sinclair stuck to Domi like a leech
Goalkeeper Tim Flowers rushed out of his box and missed the ball, only for Speed to strike Hughes' layoff straight into a Foxes defender.

But as much as Bobby Robson's men persevered, they looked impatient in attack and scrappy at the back, always giving Leicester the chance to snatch a goal on the break.

After the match, Robson said: "Three defeats in seven days means we've had a dreadful week."

"We didn't deserve the week we've had but the third defeat in seven days has made us all pretty miserable.

"I can't remember the last time that I was in charge of a team that had three consecutive defeats and certainly not in seven days, so I'm not feeling too well myself."

Well organised

Midfielders Savage and Guppy terrorised Newcastle in the middle of the park, servicing make-shift forward, Matt Elliott, to good effect.

Leicester's defence was well-organised and water-tight, but the seal was almost broken before the interval when Robert Lee's effort fizzed through a crowd of players, but Flowers caught a glimpse and saved low down to his left.

Newcastle looked no better after the break and suffered from another early goal, when Gerry Taggart played a pinpoint 50-yard pass into the path of Savage.

The Welsh international made light work of the Magpies defence as he wriggled into the box and struck a fantastic effort high into Given's top left-hand corner.

Robson's shellshocked men went searching for an immediate reply, with Domi twice going close to pulling a goal back for the home team.

The Frenchman's first effort with the head rebounded off the crossbar and moments later his jinking run in the box resulted with a shot which narrowly missed Flowers' right-hand post.

The Magpies sent in cross after cross from both wings, but the defensive partnership of Taggart and Frank Sinclair coped well, and the void left by the towering Ferguson left Newcastle looking feeble up-front.

The introduction of substitutes Diego Gavilan, striker Paul Robinson and Antunes served little purpose, with Leicester knowing they had won the day and deservedly so.


Newcastle: Given, Barton, Howey, Goma, Hughes, Solano, Lee, Speed, Domi, Dyer, Shearer. Subs: Harper, Gavilan, Griffin, Robinson, Antunes.

Leicester: Flowers, Sinclair, Taggart, Gilchrist, Impey, Savage, Lennon, Oakes, Guppy, Cottee, Elliott. Subs: Arphexad, Walsh, Marshall, Dudfield, Zagorakis.

Referee: U Rennie (Sheffield)

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