ALAN Pardew has told his Newcastle United players that they must win at all costs against Sunderland – and wipe out the memory of their derby failures.
Pardew’s side were beaten 4-0 by Tottenham Hotspur in last night’s Capital One Cup quarter-final.
Newcastle were loudly backed by 4,200 fans at White Hart Lane, though many didn’t get into the ground for the kick-off because of huge queues at the turnstiles.
Many of them had been at the Emirates Stadium four days earlier to see United beaten 4-1 by Arsenal.
And Newcastle manager Pardew – whose has presided over three successive derby defeats – told his players that they owe the fans ahead of Sunday’s game against Sunderland at St James’s Park.
“I said to the players afterwards that at one point I was just absorbing what the fans were doing,” said Pardew.
“They were with us all game. I purposely went at the end to thank them. Their support was magnificent.
“They all travelled to Arsenal, and saw us well beaten.
“They’ve travelled again and seen us well beaten.
“And we really need to do our best to put a couple of difficult results behind us this season, and in the last three games against Sunderland.
“That was my sole message to prepare ourselves for Sunday.
“We have to make sure our fans go home with a performance that gives them a win.
“This fixture isn’t about our performance level, which was OK (against Tottenham). That isn’t going to be enough, we need to win.”
United made a positive start at White Hart Lane, but Nabil Bentaleb seized on an error from 21-year-old goalkeeper Jak Alnwick to put Tottenham into an 18th-minute lead.
Nacer Chadli, Harry Kane and Roberto Soldado netted after the break.
Reflecting on the game, Pardew said: “If ever the cliche of goals changing games is right, this was it.
“I thought the game was pretty even, and Jak makes the mistake on the cross.
“You can get away with that sometimes, but it goes in and that summed up our night really. We had some big chances we didn’t take.
“I said at half-time it would explode into a cup tie if we scored.
“We had an opportunity when Remy (Cabella) perhaps should have scored.
“There were three or four key moments in the game that didn’t fall for us. It happens at this level. Having said that, in tight technical areas Tottenham were better than us.”