Danny Guthrie fired Newcastle to the top of the Coca-Cola Championship as the depleted Magpies edged their way past Leicester 1-0.

Guthrie's 52nd-minute strike was enough to secure a fourth successive league win in front of owner Mike Ashley, prospective buyer Barry Moat and would-be manager Alan Shearer on a night when a New York-based consortium claimed they were ready to open talks over a deal.

On the pitch, the home side triumphed despite injuries reducing caretaker boss Chris Hughton's options to virtually none - his seven substitutes did not have a league start between them.

The Magpies went close with four minutes gone when Geremi and Guthrie broke at pace to set up Nolan, whose right-footed shot was saved comfortably by Chris Weale.

They had appeals for a penalty turned down when Ryan Taylor's 15th-minute cross clipped Paul Gallagher's arm, and Wayne Brown was fortunate to escape after a more blatant handball a few seconds later.

However, it was Steve Harper who had to make the game's first real save six minutes later when Newcastle supporter Steve Howard met Matt Oakley's corner with a bullet header.

Howard was proving a real handful and Alan Smith's foul on the striker presented Gallagher with a 38th-minute free-kick, Harper once again coming to the rescue with a fine diving save.

Ranger whistled a right-footed shot just wide from 25 yards within seconds of the restart, and the youngster played a part in the opening goal with 52 minutes gone.

Nolan laid off Harper's clearance to him and he fed Guthrie to step inside defender Jack Hobbs and smash the ball past Weale.

Geremi might have doubled his side's advantage within three minutes with a swerving drive which just evaded the bottom corner as Newcastle went for the kill.

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Topics:
#Danny Guthrie
#Leicester City
#Football
#Ryan Taylor
#Championship
#Alan Smith
#Steve Harper
#Newcastle United
#Alan Shearer
#Paul Gallagher
#Steve Howard
#Geremi
#Matt Oakley
#Wayne Brown
#Ryan Taylor
#Jack Hobbs
#Wayne Brown
#Chris Weale