June 25, 2024

Newcastle United play Sunderland on Saturday for the first time in over eight years, and the feeling among the Toon Army is a mix of excitement and pure terror.

The Magpies are heavy favourites to win the FA Cup at the Stadium Of Light. They are a Premier League club that recently competed in the Champions League, while they face a Championship side that has not played in the top division since 2017.

However, this is a derby. Everything is feasible. And Newcastle’s recent record in this game is dismal.

Sunderland have not beaten United since 2011, when Alan Pardew’s side won on Wearside thanks to a Ryan Taylor free kick.

This time, there is a vast chasm between the two teams, which has further added to Eddie Howe’s urgency to provide a success.

He merely needs to win, and expert Chris Sutton believes he will.

Chris Sutton believes Newcastle will defeat Sunderland.
For BBC Sport, Chris Sutton has predicted the outcomes of this weekend’s FA Cup third round matches. He believes Newcastle will win 3-0 over Sunderland.

 

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“Mick Beale has just gone in at Sunderland after Tony Mowbray was harshly sacked as manager and this would be a massive win for him, but Newcastle need this even more,” he wrote on Twitter.

“In fact, it feels like they have to win this one because their rivalry is so intense.”

“Newcastle have lost in round three to League One sides in each of the last two seasons, and Eddie Howe loves to make a lot of changes for these ties – but he can’t do that this time, in their position, so I think they go full strength and go through.”

“However, even if they lose, I refuse to believe that the Magpies’ manager should be replaced.” We know they’re having a difficult run, but I believe they should continue with Eddie Howe, who still has the majority of their support.”

Newcastle must simply win the derby and advance to the FA Cup

A 3-0 win at the Stadium Of Light would be ideal, and it would be the type of result that could really galvanize a club that has seen their season disintegrate in recent weeks.

The derby comes at a bad time for Newcastle, but it also allows Howe to relieve some of the strain. That pressure is primarily from the media, but it will undoubtedly increase if his team is knocked out of the FA Cup by Sunderland.

He does have some injuries to deal with. Callum Wilson is ruled out, and it is unclear whether Kieran Trippier will be available to play the Black Cats.

But shouldn’t Newcastle have had enough? They must have had enough… Derby races are dreadful.

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