‘It’s scary’ - Chelsea World Cup winner on Newcastle United fear and hatred of facing legendary Alan Shearer

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The defensive midfielder player made 645 club appearances playing in three different countries but it was Newcastle United he feared the most.

Chelsea legend Marcel Desailly has admitted he was 'scared' of away day visits to St James' Park at the turn of the century.

The French World Cup winner made 221 appearances for Chelsea over six years having signed for a huge £4.6 million in 1998, captaining the side and forming a famous partnership with compatriot Frank Leboeuf.

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Desailly also played for Nantes, Marseille and AC Milan over a glittering career. His most common opponents, who he faced 16 times, were AS Monaco but the star also came head-to-head with the Magpies eight times while playing in England. Three of those fixtures took place at the cathedral on the hill.

When asked for his favourite Premier League ground, Desailly said: "St James’ Park. I like the stadium. It’s quite scary. At the time, they had a good crowd, good fans. I hated playing against Alan Shearer! English best goal scorer? Is he still the one? Okay, he’s lucky that Harry Kane left.“

Of the eight fixtures the Frenchman played against Newcastle United for Chelsea, he was on the winning side for three, drawing three and losing once.

The one match Desailly lost in the North East was his last trip to St James' Park in April 2004. Chelsea took an early lead in that game with Joe Cole slotting home in the fifth minute before a Shola Ameobi goal on the stroke of half turn turned the tides.

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Shola Ameobi challenges Marcel Desailly at St James’ Park (Image: Getty Images)Shola Ameobi challenges Marcel Desailly at St James’ Park (Image: Getty Images)
Shola Ameobi challenges Marcel Desailly at St James’ Park (Image: Getty Images) | Getty Images

Coming back out for the second half, the Magpies struck quickly with an Alan Shearer goal in the 48th minute and clung onto the 2-1 lead to see the match out.

Desailly never scored or assisted against Newcastle United but playing as a defensive midfielder wasn't known as being prolific for his attacking output.

After leaving Chelsea, the star went on to play his football in Qatar and since retirement has dabbled in punditry and charity work.

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