Newcastle United face 'must win' clash with Harrogate Town in the Papa John's Trophy
Newcastle United Under-21’s are in Papa John’s Trophy action tonight aiming to capitalise on a strong win over Middlesbrough on Friday.
If Newcastle are to match their exploits in this competition from three seasons ago, when they faced Sunderland in the knockout rounds, then the current crop of Under-21’s need a victory at The EnviroVent Stadium tonight.
Newcastle come into the clash on the back of a 4-1 victory over Middlesbrough on Friday night where goals from Charlie Wiggett, Elliot Anderson, Dylan Stephenson and an own-goal ended a run of four defeats on the trot.
Their only appearance so far this season in the Papa John’s Trophy saw them battered and bruised, going down 3-0 at Sheffield Wednesday.
Their hosts, on the other hand, defeated Mansfield Town 3-1 in their opening game of the competition and currently sit in 2nd place in League Two after an impressive start to the season.
The two sides faced each other in a pre-season friendly in July, Town ran out 2-1 winners on that occasion.
One player looking to impress tonight is the man who notched the first goal on Friday night, Charlie Wiggett.
Wiggett has revealed that the team believe they can get a positive result tonight and keep their hopes of progressing from the group alive:
"They are doing well but these games are very important for us and ones we look forward to.
“They are a first-team side and that's where we want to be, putting ourselves up against tougher and more aggressive opponents.” Wiggett told nufc.co.uk.
“We'll give it our all and hopefully get a strong result from the game.
"My first game for Newcastle was against Harrogate (a 2-1 defeat in July). It was the first game of pre-season with everyone getting back into the swing of things but we played well as a team and I feel we can get something from tomorrow's game.
"It's a great competition to be involved in, especially for myself being a centre-back coming up against big, strong strikers and being able to win aerial duels, one-versus-one situations and defending the box properly.
"It's a tournament that I think is very important for all of the under-21 sides."