Ki Sung-yueng: This is why Newcastle United can beat Liverpool
Newcastle United take on Jurgen Klopp’s side tomorrow night looking to end their home campaign on a high.
Second-placed Liverpool need to win to keep their Premier League title hopes alive.
The club is a point behind leaders Manchester City – who take on Leicester City on Monday night – with two games left to play.
Newcastle are 13th in the league after last weekend’s 1-1 draw against Brighton and Hove Albion.
And Ki Sung-yueng – who came off the bench at the Amex Stadium – knows the game will be watched around the world given its significance for Liverpool’s title hopes.
“I know it’s a very difficult game, and everyone will be watching it,” said the midfielder.
“Liverpool will give everything for this game. But it’s the same as against Brighton, who had a lot of pressure to win because of the position they’re in. Liverpool is the same. They will have a lot of pressure – they’ll give everything – but we’ll also give our best.
“It’s our last home game of the season, and hopefully we can do something for the fans and ourselves.”
Ki missed United’s Boxing Day game against Liverpool, who were beaten 3-0 by Barcelona at the Nou Camp in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final on Wednesday night.
Newcastle suffered their heaviest defeat of the season in the festive fixture at Anfield – they were beaten 4-0 – as Ki travelled to meet his South Korea team-mates ahead of the Asian Cup.
“I haven’t played them yet this season, but I know they’re a top side,” said the 30-year-old, who has since retired from international football to concentrate on his club career with United.
“They’re fighting for the title, so of course it’s going to be a tough game.
“They have some top-quality players up front – and everywhere else, to be honest.
“We just have to make sure that we prepare the game well, as well as focus and concentrate.
“We have to remember that we beat Man City at home, so you never know what is going to happen.”
Newcastle were disappointed only to pick up a point against relegation-threatened Brighton, having dominated the first 45 minutes at the Amex Stadium.
Ayoze Perez’s first-half goal was cancelled out by a strike from Pascal Gross in the 75th minute.
“During the first half, we were in control of the game,” said Ki, signed from Swansea City last summer.
“I don’t know why, but Brighton were so deep in the first half, and let us play.
“In the second half, they came out and they tried to do something more, so it was more difficult.
“This is a game that we could have got three points from, but we conceded a goal, and then after that Brighton were in the game.
“We were a little bit disappointed that we only drew, but we have to step forward in the next game.”
Meanwhile, Wor Flags will unveil their biggest surfer flag yet before the Liverpool game.
Members of the fans group travelled to Poland this week to bring the £15,000 flag back to Tyneside for the penultimate game of the Premier League campaign.
The surfer, which was crowd-funded in just three weeks, will cover the whole of the Gallowgate End.
Wor Flags have orchestrated a series of stunning flag displays this season, and two supporters travelled to Poland in a van to collect their latest flag, which weighs 54 stone.
It is said to be the largest ever seen at a stadium in Europe and also features the names of all the supporters who paid for it.
Wor Flags – who will test the flag at St James’s Park tonight ahead of the televised game – live tweeted their journey to Poland.
They tweeted: “The surfer is in our possession and we are on our way back to Germany! Can’t wait to get back to Newcastle now!
“It was great to see the set-up of how this huge surfer was made.
“It’s incredibly heavy and (it) was a bit of a job getting it in the van. We’ll be testing it on Friday night ready for Saturday.”
Wor Flags hope the atmosphere will replicate that against Tottenham Hotspur three years ago, when Newcastle fans persuaded Benitez to stay at St James’s Park in the wake of relegation from the Premier League on an emotional afternoon.