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Alex is in Toon with Magpies.

ALEX MATHIE today reflected on the goal that "changed his life" before tipping Newcastle United to see off his other old club Preston North End.

The Scot became an overnight hero on Tyneside when he scored a sensational maiden strike for the Magpies back in 1993 against Sheffield Wednesday - captured by the TV cameras.

And the wonder goal did enough to capture him a place in Geordie hearts during the golden Premier League era.

Mathie never went on to become an established Toon star during the Kevin Keegan era, but he certainly had fun trying and given that he had Peter Beardsley and Andy Cole in front of him, perhaps many could forgive him for not pushing on and building on his dream goal during the 4-2 win over Sheff Wed.

"Most Newcastle fans I meet still talk about that goal against Sheffield Wednesday," he said.

"We were struggling at the start of the season, and that goal changed the game.

"I remember the headlines had Kevin Keegan saying it was world class, which was nice of him to say."

Now Mathie believes that Newcastle can go on and win promotion after seeing 16 games in the Championship in which they have looked like a real force.

He said: "I always thought they would be up there challenging - they've got too much quality.

"They've got Kevin Nolan and people like that.

"I was at Ipswich when they won 4-0 - it was men against boys. They've got a very strong squad.

"They've got the two young lads up front - Andy Carroll and Nile Ranger - who work hard for the team, and with their experience, they're going to do very well.

"I played for Preston under David Moyes, and it's a lovely club. It's a great club to play for, but I think Newcastle will have too much for them."
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Nov 23, 2009
Words:308
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