Opening game put back

Last updated : 28 June 2002 By Luke Thornhill
The St James Park visit of West Ham United was originally scheduled to be played on Saturday, August 17

The clash will now take place two days later on the Monday evening, kicking off at 8.00pm to accomodate the TV cameras.

The game itself is certain to be a tense affair after a war of words broke out between the two club's after the Hammers tried to illegally poach Olivier Bernard from the Toon.

A Premier League arbitary panel rule in favour of the Magpies, and Bernard could yet line up against West Ham on the 17th - despite stating he has no desire to play for Newcastle again.