The Premier League takes a break once again as Newcastle’s next two matches are against Southampton in the Carabao Cup semi-finals. The first leg takes place on Tuesday night at St Mary’s with the second one week later at St. James’ Park.
This cup competition is the lone bright spot in an otherwise dismal campaign for the Saints, who lost 1-0 at home to Aston Villa yesterday to remain rock bottom of the Premier League.
It’s a polar opposite feeling up north as Newcastle are having their best season in a decade with a chance to make it a historic one. Newcastle are rooted in the top four of the league and have silverware in their sights.
Southampton are the next focal point for Eddie Howe and the Magpies. Coming away from St Mary’s on Tuesday in good shape for the return leg is the aim. A multiple-goal victory would ease any angst on Tyneside.
Newcastle need to quickly solve their goalscoring woes for any hopes of an easier second leg. Goals have been in short supply – except when playing Leicester City – since football returned after the World Cup break. More struggles finding the back of the net against Southampton could prove costly.
The other end of the pitch has been nothing short of sensational as Newcastle continue to keep clean sheets. Southampton are the last club to breach Howe’s preferred eleven with Romain Perraud’s late strike in early November.
The Magpies continue to be very difficult to breach but goals are going to be needed for a Wembley final. Hopefully, the lads can take their frustration in front of the net out on the struggling Saints on Tuesday.