Jubilant Mike Ashley pays post-match visit to Newcastle’s dressing room

OWNER ... Mike Ashley.
OWNER ... Mike Ashley.

MIKE Ashley made an impromptu visit to Newcastle United’s dressing room after watching the team’s 1-0 win over Leicester City.

The club’s billionaire owner congratulated manager Alan Pardew and his players after they claimed a first Premier League victory of the season.

Newcastle United's Gabriel Obertan (third right) celebrates his goal during the Barclays Premier League match at St. James' Park, Newcastle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday October 18, 2014. See PA story SOCCER Newcastle. Photo credit should read Owen Humphreys/PA Wire. Editorial use only. Maximum 45 images during a match. No video emulation or promotion as 'live'. No use in games, competitions, merchandise, betting or single club/player services. No use with unofficial audio, video, data, fixtures or club/league logos.

Newcastle United's Gabriel Obertan (third right) celebrates his goal during the Barclays Premier League match at St. James' Park, Newcastle. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday October 18, 2014. See PA story SOCCER Newcastle. Photo credit should read Owen Humphreys/PA Wire. Editorial use only. Maximum 45 images during a match. No video emulation or promotion as 'live'. No use in games, competitions, merchandise, betting or single club/player services. No use with unofficial audio, video, data, fixtures or club/league logos.

A second-half goal from Gabriel Obertan separated the two sides yesterday.

Asked by the BBC’s Match of the Day whether a post-match visit from Ashley was the norm, Pardew said: “Not in the time I’ve been here, and that’s how important the win was.”

The game was delayed by an hour so a loose panel next to the club’s new TV screen could be secured.

And Pardew was just relieved the fixture got the go-ahead.

“It’s a big feeling for us, because this club needed a win,” said Pardew.

“We had so many obstacles (in the week) with injuries, and players coming back, and not sure whether they were right, and the TV breaking, and everything else.

“It looked like the odds were against us again, but we had to dig deep and we showed that, real character.”

Newcastle, however, remain 18th in the league, a point behind rivals Sunderland, beaten 8-0 at Southampton.

Twitter: @milesstarforth