Keegan's Formula One Celebration Has Toon Amy Delighted!
The weather was bad enough, with rain and hail, but the Toon fans were happy to take another soaking as KK sprayed liquid into the air.
The opportunity for modest celebration but it was more an outpouring of relief at St James' Park as Keegan won his first match in 10 attempts since returning as manager.
Goals from Mark Viduka and Michael Owen presented Kevin Keegan and the Toon fans with something to sing about, and finally we look to be headingin the right direction.
Viduka struck with just six minutes gone to claim his sixth, and undeniably most important, goal of the season to extend Fulham's wait for an away league win to 32 games.
On an afternoon when the result was always more important than the performance, the Magpies were good value for the points, although the result remained in the melting pot until Owen calmed the nerves with an 83rd-minute header.
The performance saw the Mapies looking as good as they were against Blackburn, but with a result at the end of it, and no-one could fault either the effort or the commitment of Keegan's players.
In recent months the players and manager have been telling us how good they are, without producing much on the pitch, but now appear to have begun to believe what they have told us.
For the home fans among a crowd of 52,293, there was a rare opportunity to celebrate, while the travelling supporters high in the stand behind Steve Harper's goal as the final whistle sounded headed off on the long journey south knowing their club's plight had worsened significantly.
Keegan has tried to build his foundations on a shaky defence, but with the two most important games of the season coming up he had a serious rethink.
We needed something at Birmingham on Monday evening and a win against Fulham, and the penny finally dropped and he went back to basics ... "we will score more goals than you" and adopted a bold 4-3-3 formation.
He returned from the midlands with a valuable point as his reward for bravery, and it was little surprise, then, that he opted for the same system and the same personnel for a game his side simply had to win against Fulham.
He who dares ... wins.
NEWCASTLE: Harper, Beye (Edgar 87), Taylor, Faye, Jose Enrique,Geremi, Butt, Barton, Owen, Viduka (Smith 84),Martins (N'Zogbia 74).
Subs Not Used: Forster, Carroll.
Goals: Viduka 6, Owen 83.
FULHAM: Keller, Stalteri (Healy 84), Hughes, Hangeland,Konchesky, Andreasen, Bullard, Murphy (Volz 71), Davies,McBride (Dempsey 66), Johnson.
Subs Not Used: Warner, Bocanegra.
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Sunday 11th May 2008
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