Newcastle United have been given a favorable draw in Monaca this morning, when the groups were picked for the Europa league. and Newcastle were drawn to face Bordeaux (France), Club Brugge (Belgium) and Maritimo (Portugal) in their Europa League group stage.
That’s an excellent draw for Newcastle and there’s absolutely no reason, Newcastle now cannot do very well in the six games we will play before the end of the year, two games each at home and away against each group side.
The players all watched the draw take place, and he had this to say on Newcastle’s web-site:
“The squad enjoyed it, watching it all come in there, and I’m sure our fans would have as well.” “My gut reaction is that the travelling is good, so I’m pleased about that – I didn’t really want to go to the Ukraine or Russia or anywhere.
“The teams are of the standard you would expect in Europe so it’s a toughish group; not the toughest by any means, but not the weakest so it’s a test for us.” “I’m pleased about that. It’s always a nice for a football club to do something different and our fans will enjoy that.”
“They’re great cities to visit – Bordeaux is a great city and so is Brugge, and I’m sure our fans are going to love that. I don’t know too much about Maritimo but we’ll obviously start working now to find out as much information as we can.”
“Last time at West Ham, we drew the top team in Serie A at the time,” he recalled. “Palermo had the best team in their history at that point so we were bloody unlucky!” “This draw – and the draw in the qualifier – has been a little bit easier on me and I’m pleased about that on a personal level.”
“On a Newcastle level, I just think they’re great trips for our our fans. I don’t think they’re going to break the bank, those trips, for our fans as well and that’s important.” “Now it’s just about making sure that we win three or four of the games to get through.”
“We played two Champions League teams – Olympiakos and Braga are both in the Champions League and we won that little tournament out there.” “They’re at the same level as us so I think we’re of the level. It’s just about making sure that we’re right for these games and I think we can look forward to them.”
The interesting thing is that Newcastle have never played any of their group rivals before in Europe, so it’s going to be all new for Newcastle, but we will probably need a stronger side than we played last night against Atromitos to proceed past the group stages.
Maybe playing half the first team in the group games can get us through the group stages?
We can now do very well in Europe this season.
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