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Opinion

My 10 very favourite Newcastle United moments

3 weeks ago
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Following Newcastle United is a lifetime sentence.

No time off for good behaviour.

We may not actually ever win anything but is that vital to enjoying being a fan of Newcastle United?

At times like this when Mike Ashley has choked so much of the joy out of supporting NUFC, it is maybe worth remembering the times when it felt so good to follow this football club.

I loved the article and video this morning of the Feyenoord match, can it really be 17 years ago today that I was in Rotterdam to see that fantastic game?

That inspired me to come up with my top 10 moments that I have experienced supporting Newcastle United, not whole seasons or ever whole matches, just the exact moment…

These are my Newcastle United greatest moments in order, the very best at the top:

Kevin Keegan signs – 1982

If you weren’t around in 1982, it will be difficult for you to comprehend.

I was a teenager and had started going to all the home matches in the 1977/78 relegation season. The year the old Leazes end was also pulled down.

The club was in disarray with a crumbling stadium and a team that didn’t look capable of getting promotion, then after four seasons in the then Division Two, Newcastle signed the England Captain, in a groundbreaking deal whereby Newcastle Breweries helped supplement Keegan’s wage and his pay was also dependent on increased crowds.

Kevin Keegan signs again – 1992

Somehow the club had managed to find itself on its knees again, heading for the third tier.

That moment when Keegan stepped out for the big reveal at the press conference. Quite staggering.

Alan Shearer signs – 1996

The world’s best striker signing for his hometown club.

No other words needed.

David Kelly scoring against Portsmouth – 1992

The Keegan revival had stalled as the sheer scale of the challenge became apparent.

This was a game that Newcastle simply had to win if there was to be a realistic chance of avoiding the third tier.

He left it late but when Kelly scored at the Gallowgate end, the place erupted.

Bellamy scores in Rotterdam – 2002

Things like this just don’t happen to Newcastle United.

A chance to be the first ever club to qualify from their Champions League group despite losing the first three games.

We needed to win and the other result to go in our favour. NUFC go two up and the other result going the right way, only for Feyenoord to suddenly make it 2-2. Final seconds and Dyer has his weak shot saved but BELLAMY!

Andy Cole breaking the Newcastle United all-time season goalscoring record – 1994

This was a magnificent season, ending up third after promotion.

Beardsley and Cole were outstanding especially.

Against Aston Villa (I think), Andy Cole is away and it is one of those rare classic goals where the player rounds the keeper and you have a second or so where you already know it is going to be a certain goal.

Robert Lee scores at Wembley – 2000

The game ended in heroic failure as Newcastle had been the better team. If we had beaten Chelsea then it would surely have been an FA Cup triumph as a poor Villa side waited in the final.

However, it wasn’t to be.

What we did see though was Alan Shearer’s superb cross and Robert Lee heading it home.

The Newcastle end went absolutely MENTAL. Most people were still picking themselves up off the floor when Poyet scored the winner.

Alan Shearer testimonial atmosphere – 2006

I walked into St James Park that night and honestly, there can’t have ever been a testimonial atmosphere for any player at any club, that has ever matched this.

The match was the usual rubbish you get in these games but if you could have bottled that pre-match atmosphere it would keep you drunk for the rest of your days.

Walking into the San Siro – 2003

The metro/train ride (first time I ever heard/sang ‘Have you ever seen a Mackem in Milan?’) was pretty special and the actual game and Shearer’s two goals weren’t bad either.

However, the impact of walking into the San Siro (see photo above) and seeing 12,000+ Geordies, was just mindblowing.

Philippe Albert chips Schmeichel – 1996

For pure theatre this takes some beating.

Newcastle taking Man Utd apart 4-0 and of course just a shame it was eight months too late, as NUFC did everything but score in that game they dominated when the Mancs got so lucky.

Anyway, Philippe strides elegantly forward and it was like slow motion as the ball floated over Schmeichel’s head.

There were many other contenders too many to list. Can you do any better than the above?

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