Magpies ready for tough tests ahead
Published 06/11/2011 | 07:22
Newcastle boss Alan Pardew believes his players are ready to take on the "best in Europe" after maintaining their unbeaten start to the Barclays Premier League campaign with a 2-1 win over Everton.
Pardew's men will resume the league programme with intensely difficult trips to Manchester City and Manchester United on successive weekends before Chelsea head for Tyneside, but he is confident they will head for the Etihad Stadium determined they can return with something to show for their efforts.
He said: "All I do know is that if you are going to go somewhere to like that, you want to be in the mood we are in. Whatever I put in front of them, they think they are going to win. That inner belief is very, very important."
He added: "After Barcelona, Manchester United and Manchester City might be second or third in that group of the best in Europe.
"We are going to the best in Europe in the next two games and we couldn't be better-placed to do it."
Everton boss David Moyes was left to rue missed opportunities, and in particular the decision by referee Andre Marriner to deny his side a penalty, as the Toffees stretched their recent run to six defeats in seven games in all competitions.
He said: "If you look at chances, we probably had more chances than Newcastle in the first half and we were on the verge of going in 2-0 down, so the goal before half-time gave us a real lifeline.
"But we couldn't quite get the opening or opportunity. We didn't get as many chances in the second half, albeit I have seen it and it is a stonewall penalty when it hits his hand.
"The ball was going in as well, so it had beaten the goalkeeper, the goalkeeper wasn't getting it."