Premier League
NewcastleNewcastle United1LeicesterLeicester City0

Newcastle United 1-0 Leicester City

By Mike KeeganBBC Sport
Gabriel Obertan
Gabriel Obertan scored only his second Premier League goal
  • Gabriel Obertan strikes with 19 minutes remaining
  • Match delayed by an hour amid fears over screen
  • Despite win Newcastle stay in relegation zone
  • Goal was only Obertan's second in the Premier League

Gabriel Obertan scored the only goal of the game to give Newcastle a precious win over Leicester and ease some of the pressure on manager Alan Pardew.

Kick-off was delayed by an hour at St James' Park amid safety fears over a big screen and when the action did get under way it was hardly worth waiting for in a match low on quality.

Fabricio Coloccini and Matty James spurned rare chances for both sides.

Newcastle 1-0 Leicester: We were desperate today - Alan Pardew

But with 19 minutes left Obertan drilled home from outside the area.

The pre-match stats for United read, one win in 15 Premier League matches, seven points from 45, five league wins in this calendar year.

A draw at Swansea on 4 October had given Pardew some breathing space but with a trip to Tottenham and the visit of Liverpool looming, today's game was viewed by many as must-win for the under-fire boss with his side in the relegation zone.

The newly-promoted visitors, led by former Newcastle caretaker boss Nigel Pearson, have made a strong start to the season and lie in 12th.

For referee Martin Atkinson the delay, caused by wind dislodging the new screen, capped an eventful week after he abandoned the Serbia versus Albania match on Tuesday.

Newcastle, who lost Cheick Tiote in the warm-up, came close early on when Moussa Sissoko teed up Coloccini on eight minutes but the defender, in unfamiliar territory, side-footed wide.

Newcastle v Leicester
The win leaves Newcastle a point behind rivals Sunderland

In a dull first-half, Newcastle's Paul Dummett fired straight at keeper Kasper Schmeichel and seconds later James was unable to mark his full Premier League debut with a goal when he wasted a glorious chance after being set up by Leonardo Ulloa.

Anxiety levels in the home stands rose shortly before the break when Leicester winger Marc Albrighton curled a cross over keeper Tim Krul and against a post.

Despite an attendance of 51,866, the half-time whistle was greeted with near-silence around the ground.

Pearson laments poor finishing

Pardew delivered his 700th team talk and his side came out with more intent.

Papiss Cisse latched on to an under-hit backpass, took the ball past Schmeichel and then promptly hit his shot into the side netting of a gaping goal.

But with 18 minutes left Obertan seized his moment. Picking up the ball on a Newcastle break he cut inside and drilled a low effort into the bottom corner to awaken the previously slumbering home support.

Ulloa, the visitors' record buy, miscontrolled when clean through as the visitors searched for an equaliser and Danny Drinkwater saw his shot well saved by Krul but Newcastle held on.

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew:

"It was a very important win for the football club. It's never easy to win a Premier League game. They ran us really close. I'm really proud of my players - I thought they gave everything.

"I can't tell you how many blows we've had this week. It was beginning to feel like it was not our day and the TV broke that we bought. It was great Obertan scored because he is a player who needs confidence and when he gets confidence he's a different prospect.

"There's no corner to be turned. We need to win more games. It's been a long time coming. Hopefully we can build on this. We're still in a position we shouldn't be.

On owner Mike Ashley entering the dressing room after the final whistle, he said: "He's happy. I know both Mike and myself take a lot of criticism but we love it. He loves the club and was desperate to win. He wanted to express that to the players and I thank him for that. It's a misconception he doesn't care - of course he does."

Leicester manager Nigel Pearson:

"It's not a case of making excuses, we had enough opportunities today against a side who have been under pressure themselves but we didn't find a way through.

"I suppose one of the things we take from any game is to say that we are capable of competing, we have good players, but our game management could be better.

"Both sets of players dealt with the kick-off delay very well, it turned out to be just an hour and these things happen. It didn't affect how the players approached the game. They were upbeat and focused."

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Newcastle screen
The screen had been dislodged by wind
Fabricio Coloccini
Coloccini wasted Newcastle's best chance of the opening period
Papiss Cisse
Cisse had scored a brace to give Newcastle a draw at Swansea in their previous match
Obertan
Former Manchester United man Obertan has struggled for form
Obertan
Obertan's goal marked the first time Newcastle have taken the lead this season

Line-ups

Newcastle

  • 1Krul
  • 22Janmaat
  • 27Taylor
  • 2Coloccini
  • 36DummettSubstituted forHaidaraat 72'minutes
  • 8AnitaSubstituted forPérezat 59'minutes
  • 14Colback
  • 25Obertan
  • 7Sissoko
  • 11GouffranSubstituted forCabellaat 90+2'minutes
  • 9Cissé

Substitutes

  • 15Ferreyra
  • 17Pérez
  • 19Haidara
  • 20Cabella
  • 21Elliot
  • 30Abeid
  • 32Armstrong

Leicester

  • 1Schmeichel
  • 2de LaetBooked at 28mins
  • 5Morgan
  • 18MooreBooked at 22mins
  • 3Konchesky
  • 19CambiassoSubstituted forKnockaertat 79'minutes
  • 11AlbrightonSubstituted forVardyat 56'minutes
  • 8James
  • 4Drinkwater
  • 15SchluppSubstituted forNugentat 56'minutes
  • 23UlloaBooked at 34mins

Substitutes

  • 7Hammond
  • 9Vardy
  • 10King
  • 12Hamer
  • 24Knockaert
  • 27Wasilewski
  • 35Nugent
Referee:
Martin Atkinson
Attendance:
51,886

Match Stats

Home TeamNewcastleAway TeamLeicester
Possession
Home51%
Away49%
Shots
Home19
Away7
Shots on Target
Home6
Away2
Corners
Home10
Away7
Fouls
Home13
Away15

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Newcastle United 1, Leicester City 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Newcastle United 1, Leicester City 0.

  3. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Anthony Knockaert (Leicester City) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jamie Vardy.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Jack Colback (Newcastle United).

  5. Post update

    Anthony Knockaert (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  6. Post update

    Ayoze Pérez (Newcastle United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  7. Post update

    Foul by Paul Konchesky (Leicester City).

  8. Substitution

    Substitution, Newcastle United. Rémy Cabella replaces Yoan Gouffran.

  9. Post update

    Foul by Yoan Gouffran (Newcastle United).

  10. Post update

    Ritchie de Laet (Leicester City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  11. Post update

    Offside, Newcastle United. Ayoze Pérez tries a through ball, but Papiss Demba Cissé is caught offside.

  12. Post update

    Attempt saved. Ayoze Pérez (Newcastle United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Yoan Gouffran with a cross.

  13. Post update

    Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Ritchie de Laet.

  14. Post update

    Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Liam Moore.

  15. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Ayoze Pérez (Newcastle United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Daryl Janmaat.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Kasper Schmeichel.

  17. Post update

    Attempt saved. Papiss Demba Cissé (Newcastle United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Ayoze Pérez with a cross.

  18. Post update

    Foul by Jamie Vardy (Leicester City).

  19. Post update

    Massadio Haidara (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  20. Post update

    Attempt saved. Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Gabriel Obertan.