Ayoze Perez made the switch from Newcastle to Leicester in the summer, but is by no means the only player to have played for both clubs over the years.

Keith Gillespie, Steve Howey and Nikos Dabizas are just three of a host of players who left Tyneside and went on to play for the Foxes.

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But one player made the move from Leicester to Newcastle and became a hero at St James’ Park, and is remembered fondly by any fan who watched him play.

David Kelly was a slight player to look at, but put him through on goal with a chance to score, and he would shrug off the most physical defenders in the game.

The pacy player made 66 appearances for Leicester in the early 1990s – scoring 22 goals during that time – before Ozzie Ardiles persuaded the Newcastle hierarchy to pay a fee of around £250,000, to bring the player to the North East.

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He went on to make 70 appearances for the Magpies, and scored 35 goals in the black and white shirt.

His name was cemented in Geordie folklore due to him scoring the winning goal against arch-rivals Sunderland in March 1992, with a header that somehow crept over the line at the Leazes End in a 1-0 win.

David Kelly was integral to Newcastle’s 1993 promotion

But Kelly’s finest moment in a Newcastle shirt was saved for his last appearance for the club the following year, in the season-ending win – with promotion already secured – ironically, against Leicester.

 

Kevin Keegan had taken over from the sacked Ardiles the previous season, and the Toon romped to the title, with the last game of the season a promotion party.

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Kelly scored a hat-trick in the first-half, as Newcastle found themselves 6-0 ahead at the break. Strike partner Andy Cole also grabbed a hat-trick with his second-half goal topping off an incredible 7-1 win.

Kelly was sold to Wolves that summer for £750,000 – three times the fee they paid – with Keegan signing Peter Beardsley to partner Cole.

After Wolves, Kelly had a spell at Sunderland, and even while appearing for Newcastle’s rivals in a Tyne-Wear derby, the striker was given an amazing, rapturous welcome from the Geordie crowd, such was his standing in their eyes.

When his playing career ended, Kelly had a brief spell as joint caretaker manager at Port Vale, alongside Chris Morgan, but it only lasted four games, as he left when Neil Aspin was appointed as permanent manager.

He is one of Newcastle’s unsung heroes, and without his goals in that 1992/1993 season, there may never have been Keegan’s Entertainers in the years following their promotion to the Premier League.

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