Manchester United boss makes ‘very important’ claim ahead of Newcastle United clash

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Man Utd v Newcastle United: Old Trafford is braced for a match that could have huge implications in the race to qualify for Europe.

Newcastle United head to Old Trafford tonight knowing a win would see them have one foot in Europe next season. Three points for the Magpies would leave them heading into the final day of the season knowing they simply have to match or better Chelsea’s result against Bournemouth to finish in 6th place.

A point tonight would open the door for the Blues to finish above them, but would also see Erik ten Hag’s side solely reliant on beating local-rivals Manchester City in the FA Cup final to play European football next term. It is a huge match for both teams, and the magnitude of the game is not lost on Ten Hag: 

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“It's a very important game,” he admitted. “You get the ranking, so it's very important to get the win. We have to do everything in it to get the win and we have to fight hard for it.”

For the Magpies, tonight’s game offers them an opportunity to guarantee finishing above Manchester United for the first time in Premier League history. Considering the injury issues Newcastle have had to deal with this season - and are continuing to deal with now - qualifying for Europe would be a very good achievement by Eddie Howe’s side.

Speaking ahead of the match, Howe is hopeful that his side can finish the season strongly - beginning at Old Trafford this evening: "We find ourselves in this position, and it is where we deserve to be.” Howe said.

“We will be hoping to finish off these two games strongly. We must make sure our players go to Manchester United in really good spirits, confident and prepared. Our motivation is to qualify for Europe."

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