The Championship title may not be considered a major trophy, but on May 7 2017, Newcastle fans did not care one bit, as the Magpies secured the title, thanks to late drama elsewhere.

When Brighton beat Wigan 2-1 in mid-April, with Newcastle losing 3-1 at Ipswich, the title seemed destined for the south coast, as Chris Hughton’s side were seven points clear at the top, with just three games to go.

All the Seagulls needed was one win from their remaining three games, and Newcastle – despite not yet securing automatic promotion – looked to be playing for second place.

(Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

But Brighton lost at Norwich and at home to Bristol City in their next two games, while Rafa Benitez guided Newcastle to wins at home to Preston and away to Cardiff.

Those results meant Toon fans went into the last game of the season, with a slim chance of claiming top spot.

Late drama for Brighton flipped the title race on its head

Despite cruising to a comfortable 3-0 win over Barnsley at St James’ Park, the title looked beyond them, as Brighton led at ten-man Aston Villa with just a minute of the game to go.

Newcastle’s game had already finished, but no fans had left as they awaited the side’s lap of honour, which would not begin until the final whistle at Villa Park.

(Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

With everyone waiting around, looking at phones, or listening to radios, a murmur started in one section of the ground, and a 50,000-person game of Chinese Whispers started.


The murmurs became a crescendo of noise and celebrations as the rumour was confirmed – Jack Grealish had scored for Villa, and as it stood, Newcastle would snatch the title from Brighton’s grasp.

The players on the fringe of the pitch also became aware – everyone swept up in the emotion – and then the final whistle was confirmed in the Midlands, and Newcastle were champions.

(Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Cue the wild scenes of champagne being sprayed on the pitch, We Are The Champions belting out on the stadium’s sound-system, and Toon fans singing along in delirium.

It was a night that will live long in the memories of fans, while also reminding them of what it would be like if Newcastle were ever to win a ‘real’ trophy again?

It may not be seen as significant siverware for the elite clubs in the game, but that Sunday in May, it was certainly a special one for all Newcastle supporters.

Every day until Christmas, Geordie Boot Boys will bring you another incredible Newcastle moment as we countdown the 25 most iconic Toon moments of the decade.

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