We Have Great Belief – We Can Beat Anybody At Home

Even though we play Sunderland in an early kick-off game on Sunday, Alan Pardew will play his strongest side tonight against Benfica, in a valiant attempt to get through to the final four of the Europa League.

ben arfa anzhi

Ben Arfa – will play some part tonight

And as it so happens we could have Cheick Tiote and Mathieu Debuchy back for the Sunderland game, and Ben Arfa could also start on Sunday, but he will start on the bench tonight.

Certainly Alan Pardew is looking forward to this game, as he had this to say today in the Daily Telegraph:

“It will be a special night and I’m really looking forward to it,” “Unless you are one of four or five biggest clubs in country, to get to the quarter-final is something special”

“This is where this club wants to be and my aim when I came here was to lift this club up there again.” “Our defensive record is very good in Europe. We have done enough in the first leg to say we have got a big shout if we are intelligent about how we approach it.”

“It’s all about the fans. I think, for us, if we need two goals with 20 minutes to go we can do it. The fans have seen the way we are finishing games and they will know we can.”

“We were a little bit unlucky in Portugal,” “That probably didn’t come through in the Portuguese press, but they won 3-1, and only Barcelona have beaten them by two clear goals this season, so that’s the size of the task.”

“We are under no illusions there, but we have great belief. We can beat anybody at home.”

If Newcastle make it through to the semi-finals of this competition, it will be only the third time we have done so.

Newcastle won the thing in 1969 when it was called the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, and Bobby Robson took us through to the final four nine years ago when it was called the UEFA Cup.

Benfica will have rarely faced a hostile atmosphere that they will experience tomorrow night, in front of 52.400 screaming Geordies, and the Newcastle manager is hoping they will buckle under the pressure.

So are we, and it’s definitely a possibility.

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47 comments so far

  • Cisse's Big Toe

    Apr 11, 2013 at 12:26 AM

    Comment #1

    cmon lads lets do this, make us proud, let the world know who we are. if we beat this team and see the same passion from players and managers alike i way well be in tears too

  • Cisse's Big Toe

    Apr 11, 2013 at 12:26 AM

    Comment #2


  • p

    Apr 11, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    Comment #3

    I just saw taylor is out, not sure we will keep a clean sheet with a back 4 of simmo, mbwia, perch and haidaro.

    No chance if big mike is around.

    As i said before, not sure we have 3 or more goals in us

  • matt11_25

    Apr 11, 2013 at 12:45 AM

    Comment #4

    We could of been 3-0 up in the first half against Benfica if Cisse would have taken his chances (or played a square ball), so it’s possible! Lets hope the lads believe it is

  • SydneyMag

    Apr 11, 2013 at 12:58 AM

    Comment #5

    hope it’s worth waking up at 4:30am to watch.
    is steven ‘fistpumps’ taylor made of glass?

  • p

    Apr 11, 2013 at 1:10 AM

    Comment #6


    Ifs n ands, pots and pans

    But you never know

  • RonVanDam

    Apr 11, 2013 at 1:18 AM

    Comment #7

    Benfica game will be tough, we are playing a team at the top of their game. We havent won a game by 3-0 this season so its going to be a big ask. We have to come out guns blazing. . Also i dont want the game to go into OT. I dont want fatigue to be a factor when we play against 5under1and.

  • t00ntime

    Apr 11, 2013 at 1:20 AM

    Comment #8

    @matt the ball cisse should of squared was against fulham ;-). against benfica it was marveux who got to the box and didnt pass it, then after that he did and cisse hit the post. Cisse is back inform by the looks of things he was great against fulham and benfica very unlucky not to score more. If i remember right our favorite result was 2-0 last year. maybe we can recall last years form just this once 🙂

  • Jamiemac

    Apr 11, 2013 at 1:55 AM

    Comment #9

    Is there a source saying Cisse is definitely out?

  • Jamiemac

    Apr 11, 2013 at 1:56 AM

    Comment #10

    *Taylor I meant haha must be bed time!

  • p

    Apr 11, 2013 at 2:31 AM

    Comment #11

    Taylor out of squad seems to be on many web sites

  • DeanToon88

    Apr 11, 2013 at 3:10 AM

    Comment #12

    Those 2 mistakes could prove too costly for us if benfica score 1 goal it could be allover for our euroleague adventure, 2 silly little mistakes, we would of went through to the semi final easily if they didn’t come into the game with a 2 goal advantage, i think we will dominate the game and the fans will help with that but if they score one goal no matter how much effort we put into it we will still not make it to semis, it’s a weird situation for us but if we win i would be buzzing.

  • tweaked

    Apr 11, 2013 at 3:34 AM

    Comment #13

    Gentsi dreamt of European glory last night, let’s hope this dream comes true

  • Greebol1892

    Apr 11, 2013 at 4:17 AM

    Comment #14

    Definitely need another 2 CBs in summer. With Colo off soon and STaylor’s ongoing injury problems; Wills is not a 1st-choice CB… 3rd choice at best. Just hope we ATTACK tonite! HTL!

  • geordiejamie89

    Apr 11, 2013 at 4:24 AM

    Comment #15

    It’s possible. But it’s also Newcastle. I just hope we’re not using the best players for nothing. If Newcastle play the right team against Sunderland then they will probably end the weekend in the relegation places. And that would be so sweet seeing the scum in free-fall.
    Having said that if we can win both then it’s worth it.

  • toonarmydownsouth

    Apr 11, 2013 at 6:37 AM

    Comment #16

    Can’t believe that Wigan can’t sell out there allotted tickets for there FA cup semi final! They only got 31,000!!

  • davis_toons

    Apr 11, 2013 at 6:44 AM

    Comment #17

    The problem we need to understand is how not to let them score a goal?

    And we needed to score 3!

    Either 1st half with 2 goals and 2nd half ended with 1.

    Even playing with a 10 man team we can hardly score.

    And we do concede.. we have top notch young keeper but will he be in top form tonight or will pressure overrun him? (So far Krul, have overcome most pressure)

    We can’t make stupid mistakes, got sent off, handball, very bad decision passing.

    -We have to try to get the 2 goals or even 3 from the start.
    -Try to get their man send off if bad tackle comes in, make the most off it.

    ..still feels is a up hill task for us. its too much for us now.

    We aren’t the Manchesters

    (there will be no european football next season. Just hope we learn our lesson. No handball in our box


    Apr 11, 2013 at 6:59 AM

    Comment #18

    hi looser geordie s

  • Jail for Ashley

    Apr 11, 2013 at 7:21 AM

    Comment #19

    It’s because Wigan is a pointless grubby Rugby town full of pointless grubby football fans with a pointless grubby football team.

  • Troy Stavers

    Apr 11, 2013 at 7:39 AM

    Comment #20

    I’m fizzing to hear Harry form One Direction caused Steven Taylor’s injury!!!!!!

    A source is saying Harry tried a Maradona step over as a joke and caught Taylor by surprise, so he stretched to get the ball and tweaked his groin!!

    Unbelievably Harry got past him and slotted past Elliott!

    Sign him up! :-D. Number 9 Styles. 😀

  • Transfer Sage

    Apr 11, 2013 at 7:40 AM

    Comment #21


    They only get gates of low 20,000s and thats with a few thousand away fans…so taking 20,000ish to wembley isn’t too bad.

    If the FA though about football fans rather than making money for their overly expensive stadium then they would realise wembley is for the final and not the semi.

  • Troy Stavers

    Apr 11, 2013 at 7:42 AM

    Comment #22

    Seriously fizzin that a boy band should be practicing for a publicity stunt before a big game.

    Apparently, Styles was taking it very serious and studded Marveaux in a tackle. Fortunately he was ok but was limping afterwards!!!!

  • bills-son

    Apr 11, 2013 at 7:49 AM

    Comment #23

    What gives me a bit of confidence for tonight is that Benfica sat back on their lead for the last ten minutes at home. I was surprised at that because 3.1 isn’t a done deal lead to take into the second leg.

    If Benfica come to defend, and especially to sit back in the first 20/25 minutes, I think we could get a goal. Our problem in games always seems to be getting the ball early in the game although that wasn’t the case away to Benfica. When we do dominate possession you can see the confidence in the players and we look a totally different team to the one that often chases possession in the first half of games.

    Obviously we have to be careful about Benfica scoring on the break but if they sit back in the those first 20/25 munutes we’ve got to go for a goal and not be too cautious. Scoring early will send the crowd mad and then it really will be game on.

    I thought Sissoko was back to his best against Fulham and I think he could be massive for us tonight. HWTL.

  • cyprus

    Apr 11, 2013 at 7:50 AM

    Comment #24

    On AP: dude, your celebration has won me over! Your passion for the team is immense.
    On the game: Just don’t think we can play 90′ all out, so first half hour we’ll need the patience AP referred to. But, we will need to be 1 up by half time.

  • bills-son

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:01 AM

    Comment #25

    I’ve just read that Harry Styles might have had a part in Taylor’s injury and left Marv limping….

    If that’s true – or even that OD got kitted up and had a knockabout with the players two days before a Europa QF – I find that unbelievable.

    There is always achance that a kid will be hyped up and want to prove how good/hard he is in the tackle and clatter a player. Even if they don’t do it deliberately the players are so fit and quick that any tackle could be miles late with potentially disastrous results.

    I hope this isn’t true but if it is I bet there is some right behind the scenes finger pointing going on. I wouldn’t want to be explaining this to Ashley.

  • Bambams

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:02 AM

    Comment #26


    Just shows how Saylor cannot read an attacking players intent, lets face it Harry was only going in One Direction towards goal when Taylor overstretched. … The Youtube video is so embarrassing, nee wonder Pards wants it taken off. He even offered the fan free tickets for the Liverpool match (Benfica and Mackem sold out)…..

    Taylor was heard to shout ” we we we all the way home “

  • Ibizatoon - Back By Popular Demand

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:22 AM

    Comment #27

    Have I got the wrong blog? keep typing in nufcblog.com but it keeps bringing up a one direction fan blog 🙂

  • Ibizatoon - Back By Popular Demand

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:25 AM

    Comment #28

    Anyway, back to football. Come on lads you can do it! Do it for One Direction…damn it, I’ve been suckered in.

    Best get to ITunes then, is there a greatest hits album yet?

  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:44 AM

    Comment #29

    If that’s right
    Wigan/Millwall semi final only 31,000 tickets sold
    SERVES THE BLOODY GREEDY FA RIGHT – bloody embarrasment

  • obatoyou

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    Comment #30

    Should be a hoot, will be watching a delayed telecast at 6am here in Australia on setanta.. So shhh don’t tell me the score! I have every confidence we will advance to the semis just hope we can avoid Chelsea and Tottenham ~ hwtl!

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    Comment #31


    Where did you hear that? If that is true then that is unforgivable from the club. I thought it was ridiculous having them there given that this has been hyped up as such a massive week for the club.

    Why have popstars visiting the training ground? What on earth have they got to do with football, and I can’t imagine too many of our players are big fans of theirs, other than maybe Sammi, who isn’t here at the moment.


    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:54 AM

    Comment #32

    hello moderator

  • Troy Stavers

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:54 AM

    Comment #33


    The vid was removed immediately!!

    Makes me fizz!

    Mind, if Harry is owt like like grandad Nobby we should sign him up! 😉

    Seriously, I was talking to Saylor yesterday, getting interviewed by a TV crew and off the record he was blaming Styles for the stupidity plus himself for lunging!!

    He reckons he’ll be back for Sunday tho.


    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:54 AM

    Comment #34

    hi looser geordie s .

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:58 AM

    Comment #35

    Over the moon anyway, just checked Supersports Africa schedule, Chelsea on early, then they are showing Newcastle and showing spuds delayed. Great result, that means I can go to any bar and watch it instead of being stuck finding a dodgy stream, hoping there isn’t a power cut and my internet connection doesn’t drop out! Woop Woop! Derby is on as well, although had no doubt on that one!

  • Ibizatoon - Back By Popular Demand

    Apr 11, 2013 at 8:58 AM

    Comment #36

    Warrior…Come to join in some European banter for the day?

    That and some one direction of course.

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Apr 11, 2013 at 9:02 AM

    Comment #37

    Half our players probably couldn’t name a one direction song, I certainly can’t! Willo loves his gangsta rap, Socks and Mapou are all about the country, and Cabaye and Debuchy are all over the thrash metal.


    Apr 11, 2013 at 9:03 AM

    Comment #38

    ya ibiza came to see how nufc will crumble lol

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Apr 11, 2013 at 9:07 AM

    Comment #39

    Mackem, what is a “looser Geordie”. I think the bigg market on a friday and saturday night is where you find most of the “looser” ones.

  • Ibizatoon - Back By Popular Demand

    Apr 11, 2013 at 9:11 AM

    Comment #40

    Warrior…Quite funny really, Sunderland haven’t even got anywhere and yet they’re managing to crumble…you have to laugh.


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