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Newcastle fans unite for terminally ill Bradley Lowery

Bradley and his mum Gemma Credit: Family photo

Newcastle United fans have started a Facebook campaign to show their support for five-year-old Bradley Lowery, a Sunderland fan, who has been told his cancer is terminal.

His family have told of their devastation, after revealing his health has deteriorated.

On Saturday fans have asked that everyone in St. James Park give a round of applause and join in chanting on the 5th minute of the game against Birmingham City in his honour.

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Alan Shearer to get CBE from Prince William

Alan Shearer is to get a CBE today Credit: PA

Former Newcastle and England striker Alan Shearer is to be honoured for his charity work.

The Premier League's all-time top scorer is to be made a CBE by FA president the Duke of Cambridge (Prince William) at a Buckingham Palace ceremony.

Shearer was given the award in the Queen's Birthday Honours in June for his charitable services to the community in the North East.

Rafa: "We should have won"

Eldin Jakupovic was 10-man Hull's hero as they beat Newcastle 3-1 on penalties in the EFL Cup after the quarter-final tie had finished 1-1 at the end of extra time.

Tigers goalkeeper Jakupovic kept out Jonjo Shelvey's spot-kick and also saved from Yoan Gouffran, while Dwight Gayle's effort hit the crossbar.

Hull trio Robert Snodgrass, Michael Dawson and Tom Huddlestone all converted their penalties to secure Mike Phelan's side an unlikely passage into the last four of the competition for the first time in the club's history.

Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez says his team played well and deserved to win:

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Fan blog: Newcastle Utd 0 - 1 Blackburn Rovers

Newcastle Utd 0 - 1 Blackburn. Credit: ITV News

By Stuart Stratford

Blackburn Rovers dented Newcastle United’s promotion push in front of another packed house at St James Park.

Rafa Benitez rang the changes following the comprehensive victory at Elland Road last weekend and was rewarded by an unsurprisingly abysmal performance. Despite this, the players left the pitch to a chorus of “We’re still going to win the league”. Defeat is dimming belief in the players to get back to the top flight at the first time of asking.

Newcastle deserved little from this game – certainly not a win – and can have few complaints about defeat. It took over an hour for a shot on target and unsurprisingly, Steele in the Blackburn goal turned Shelvey’s shot aside quite comfortably. Graham had the game’s first effort, his header though set the tone and cleared the bar. Newcastle responded by huffing and puffing, Yedlin made Steele claim his driven cross whilst Mitrovic had his shot deflected wide.

As the game wore on, the crowd slumped lower into their seats and the normal vibrancy in the stands was dragged down to the level of the display on the pitch. Before the interval, Atsu and Yedlin shot wide before Mitrovic thrashed another effort high and wide. The shrill peep from the referee’s whistle woke many up from their slumber and there was more life in queues for the concessions than had been seen on the pitch.

Things improved in the second half although the bar was set so low in the first that it was hard for to be any worse. Atsu picked up where he left off in the first half, firing wide early on. Things got a little better when Hayden picked up the ball in the midfield and lashed a shot wide from outside the area, invigorating the crowd, even if some were convinced they’d been woken up for a fire drill. Jesus Gamez started his first Championship match this season and had been untroubled until he suffered what looked to be a collarbone injury and was replaced by Paul Dummett. If Rafa Benitez could have replaced half the side, he probably would have do so. Matt Ritchie was the next to miss, arriving to latch onto Mitrovic’s flick but in keeping with the rest of the afternoon, he fired over from six yards out. Even the best that Newcastle have fell prey to the lacklustre finishing which afflicted the whole squad this afternoon.

As many wondered what they could have been doing more productively this afternoon, a brief flurry of action interrupted the lull. Emnes had been on the pitch only briefly when fed the ball in the area, he span and skewed his shot wide. The warning injected some urgency into the Magpies but only marginally improved their accuracy. After Shelvey’s shot had been turned wide, Steele reacted quickly to snuff out the danger as Clark seemed poised to score.

With a quarter of an hour remaining of normal time, the deadlock was broken. Somehow, Blackburn forced a corner and sent their travelling support into delirium when Mulgrew slammed his shot past the helpless Darlow. Belatedly, Dwight Gayle entered the fray but it was to little effect. The rot had well and truly set in for the afternoon, the latest striker to force his way into the affections of the Toon Army’s hearts blazed over as the final whistle loomed.

Full-time arrived and the only thing missing was the Gallowgate emptying to the sounds of Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go. A poor performance got the result it deserved but so far this season, Newcastle have responded well to setbacks this season and there’s no reason to believe they won’t this time either.

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