Newcastle Are Back In The Champions League (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
Jul 19, 2022
Lagos, Nigeria.
Despite playing to a goalless draw against relegation-threatened Leicester City at St James' Park on Monday night, Newcastle United has secured qualification for the next season's Champions League.

In a match largely dominated by Newcastle, who enjoyed 78% possession and took 23 shots on goal, Leicester came close to snatching victory in the 93rd minute with their first shot on target. However, goalkeeper Nick Pope denied Timothy Castagne's first-time volley, preserving the draw.

Eddie Howe's side remains in third place in the Premier League table, out of reach for fifth-placed Liverpool, who sit four points behind with only one game remaining. This achievement marks Newcastle's return to the Champions League after an 18-year absence since their last participation in 2003. On the other hand, Leicester, who competed in the Champions League six seasons ago, have climbed above Leeds United into 18th place. However, they remain in danger of relegation, trailing 17th-placed Everton by two points heading into the final weekend of the season.

Notable team news prior to the kickoff was that James Maddison and Harvey Barnes were named on the substitutes' bench for Leicester, while Dean Smith opted for a five-man defense. Newcastle's Joelinton was forced to withdraw from the starting lineup due to an injury during warm-up, with Elliot Anderson taking his place in midfield.

The match was dominated by Newcastle's attacking prowess, with Alexander Isak and Miguel Almiron posing the biggest threats. However, Leicester's defensive trio of Harry Souttar, Jonny Evans, and Wout Faes prevented clear-cut opportunities for Newcastle. Leicester struggled to generate an offensive threat and found it challenging to break out of their own half.

Newcastle's Anderson had the first decent chance in the 22nd minute, but his long-range effort was comfortably saved by Daniel Iversen. Towards the end of the first half, Newcastle pressed hard, and questionable goalkeeping from Iversen almost allowed them to take the lead. Callum Wilson struck the near post from a tight angle, and Wilfred Ndidi cleared the follow-up off the line. Almiron hit the opposite post a minute later, and Wilson narrowly headed over the crossbar from a Kieran Trippier corner.

Leicester made a halftime substitution, replacing Kelechi Iheanacho with James Maddison, but it failed to alter the match's dynamics as Newcastle continued their dominance. In the 58th minute, Almiron tested Iversen with a powerful strike from a central area, but the goalkeeper made a brilliant save.

Jonny Evans was substituted due to an apparent hamstring issue, along with Jamie Vardy, as Leicester made changes in their attack by introducing Harvey Barnes and Patson Daka. Newcastle hit the woodwork for the third time in the 70th minute from a corner, but Bruno Guimaraes' header struck the back post from close range. Iversen also denied Sean Longstaff's low-driven shot.

In the final five minutes, Leicester enjoyed a decent spell of possession and finally registered their first shot on target in the 93rd minute. However, Nick Pope made a crucial save to deny Castagne from around 12 yards out, securing the point needed for Newcastle to qualify for the Champions League.

Newcastle will travel to face mid-table Chelsea on the final day of the season, while Leicester will aim to avoid relegation as they host West Ham United at the King Power Stadium.

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