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Newcastle 0-1 Blackburn- The nine game winning streak comes to an end

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Newcastle United were defeated 1-0 at home to Blackburn Rovers in what can only be labelled as a bad day at the office. 

The first half can only be described in one word-dull. The visitors will actually feel that they shaded it, with Newcastle really struggling to get any sort of momentum going. Christian Atsu did have a chance late on, when he creeped in behind the Blackburn defence, but he could not find the target. Long range attempts from Yedlin and an audacious overhead kick from Mitrovic failed to even trouble Jason Steele in the Blackburn net.

As for Blackburn, their star man Danny Graham forced Karl Darlow into a wonderful save with a fine looping header. Liam Feeney, perhaps Rovers' best player on the day, almost picked out loanee Sam Gallagher, but the big Southampton man was inches away from connecting.

The hosts did begin the second half much better. Atsu again almost scoring with a volley from Perez's cross, and Isaac Hayden flashing a 25-yard shot just wide of the post.

Then disaster struck for Jesus Gamez. The former Atletico Madrid full back, who has struggled for fitness all season, was carried off on a stretcher with what looked to be a very serious collar-bone injury. He was replaced by Paul Dummett.

Marvin Emnes was introduced by Owen Coyle, and he looked a threat, almost getting on the end of Graham's header. Rafa Benitez, and the St James' Park faithful became increasingly agitated as the Magpies just couldn't get a foothold on the game.

Newcastle did, eventually begin to turn the screw. Stand in captain Jonjo Shelvey struck a sweet volley towards goal, but was denied by Steele, who tipped it around the post.

It looked as though Blackburn would have to ready themselves for a Newcastle onslaught in the final fifteen minutes, but this is the Championship, and as Newcastle should know by now, you cannot take anything for granted.

75 minutes played, and the score read Newcastle 0-1 Blackburn. Charlie Mulgrew rose highest to head home a Craig Conway corner. Astonishing.

Newcastle's response? Very little. Isaac Hayden, who was probably the stand out for Rafa's men, fired a shot against a Blackburn body with 80 minutes on the clock. Dwight Gayle was only introduced with 5 minutes of normal time remaining, replacing Chancel Mbemba. He blazed a shot over the bar after being picked out by Matt Ritchie in the dying embers of the game. That really was as good as it got for Newcastle.

In all, it was a very flat performance from the home side, and the 50,000+ Newcastle supporters will go home wondering what went wrong for their team today. Rafa Benitez chants were still ringing around the ground by the end of the game, and he will rally his troops for the massive cup quarter final at Hull on Tuesday night. All good records are made to be broken, sadly that was not the case today for the Toon Army.