Newcastle finished 11th in the Premier League last season despite spending the majority of the campaign locked in a relegation battle.
Following a £92million January splurge, The Magpies are expected to strengthen again during the summer transfer window having already secured the £15million signing of Matt Targett from Aston Villa.
The ambitions of the club under new Saudi-backed ownership are to break into the top half of the Premier League but Merson feels that a cup run should be the priority.
“Newcastle should be happy finishing tenth next season if they can put together a good cup run as well,” the former Arsenal forward said in his Daily Star column.
“They have got to start turning up in the cup competitions because too many managers have mugged those off when they’ve gone there.
“Newcastle haven’t won a trophy in so long and their fans need something to get excited about.”
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