Leicester beats injury-plagued Newcastle 3-0 in EPL

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              Leicester City's James Maddison celebrates scoring his side's second goal of the game,  during the English Premier League soccer match between Newcastle United and Leicester City at St James' Park, in Newcastle, England, Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020. (Owen Humphreys/PA via AP)
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NEWCASTLE, England (AP) — Ayoze Perez and James Maddison took advantage of defensive mistakes as second-place Leicester maintained its distant pursuit of Premier League leader Liverpool with a comfortable 3-0 win at Newcastle on Wednesday.

The hosts played the final 39 minutes with 10 men after Fabian Schar limped off injured with all three substitutions already made in a game watched by more than 52,000 at St. James’ Park. American defender DeAndre Yedlin played on for Newcastle despite a suspected broken right hand. The club is awaiting the results of x-rays.

Leicester took the lead in the 36th minute when former Newcastle player Perez intercepted Florian Lejeune’s poor cross-field ball and cut inside Schar to fire past goalkeeper Martin Dubravka, despite slipping as he took aim.

Lejeune’s afternoon took a further turn for the worse within three minutes when another poor pass was picked off to allow Maddison to blast a superb left-foot shot high into the top corner and make it 2-0. Substitute Hamza Choudhury wrapped up the win in style in the 87th, sweeping home a third off the underside of the crossbar for his first Premier League goal.

Leicester is 10 points behind Liverpool and has played two more matches.

Newcastle lost its third straight league game.