Newcastle United will leave St James’ Park just mere days after returning home having gone on the road for three consecutive games before last Sunday’s 6-1 stomping of Tottenham.
The Magpies will travel to Liverpool to visit the blue squad from Merseyside in one of the latest games played at Goodison Park overall, and most definitely the last one between these two as Newcastle will go on to play Champions League football next season while Everton will be (at least that’s what the standings say on this very day) playing in the Championship.
When these two met back in October, Newcastle already extracted one point from their matchup thanks to a hard-fought 1-0 victory. Anthony Gordon played that game. He was donning Blue and White threads. How times have changed since then...
Howe took to the microphones and addressed the most pressing questions by the media on Wednesday, ahead of the trip to Liverpool to face Everton at Goodison Park on Thursday, April 27th.
The Magpies might have put six goals past top-5 side Tottenham last Sunday, but Eddie Howe surely is not buying the hype entering Thursday’s clash against relegation-bound Everton.
“We’re going to need to be very strong, mentally and physically.”
“We need to be robust and stand up to the challenges we may face and then show our quality.”
That said, Howe knows what his team have to do going forward if they want to replicate the result earned at SJP last weekend: start games like there is no tomorrow—or no 25th minute, for that matter.
“The plan is always to start like that. You want the intensity and to take the game to the opposition.”
“I think at home, by and large, we’ve done that really well.”
“Where we’ve had issues is the last couple of away games where we haven’t started in that fashion so that’s something to learn from going into this game.”
This midweek game takes place, of course, on the road in the Blue side of Liverpool. There will be a familiar face visiting Everton on Thursday, that of former Toffee Anthony Gordon. The gaffer shared a few words about the upcoming reunion.
“I can only really comment on the player I’ve seen, and he’s been very good.”
“Gordon has trained very well and he’s passionate, wants to achieve things, and wants to do well in his career.”
“He’s in a good place and he’s looking forward to the game.”
Howe also had some flowers to give to his no. 1 performer of late, no other than veteran winger Jacob Murphy of all men.
“I’ve always thought Jacob had very special talents and abilities. He’s very quick and a very good 1v1 player.”
“I’ve always preferred him on the right rather than the left and that consistency of selection has helped him.”
“I was delighted to see him get the two goals. The second goal was a special finish and he is capable of that, we see his finishing is at a high level, so it’s about getting himself in those positions as often as possible.”
Turns out Bruno—who has played injured all year long—is fit but there might be trouble coming Fabian Schar’s way according to the boss. Other than that, NUFC should be good to go on all other expected (read: no-ASM-related) fronts.
“We’ve got a couple of knocks.”
“Bruno we think will be OK but Fabian Schär is one we’ll have to check and make a late call on and it’s a similar situation with a couple of the other lads.”
Finally, Howe said that he clearly sees the team advancing in the right direction, although he still thinks there is some more room for improvement going forward.
“There’s definitely been huge improvements from my time here from day one to now but we want more.
“We want to continue to evolve in different ways.”
“When you look at the team as a whole we’ve got a long way to go to be the team we want to be.”
Everton is entering this game sitting 18th and in the last place leading to relegation. However, the Toffees are just one point behind 17th-place Leicester and two points behind 18th-place Leeds with a game in hand (32 to 33) on both teams above them in the standings.
The Toffees welcomed Dominic Calvert-Lewin back to the starting lineup last weekend after he spent more than two months out, and he’s expected to start again on Thursday. Abdoulaye Doucoure will be back from a three-match ban, too, while Amadou Onana could also return from an injury to face Newcastle.
All that said, Everton won’t have Mason Holgate (suspended) while Seamus Coleman might stay out of the lineup.
- Date: Thursday, April 27th
- Kick-off: 19:45 BST / 2:45 EST
- Location: Goodison Park, Liverpool (England)
- Broadcasts: fuboTV (CAN) — USA Network, UNIVERSO NOW, nbcsports.com, UNIVERSO, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo, NBC Sports App (USA) — BT Sport App, BTSport.com, BT Sport 2 (UK)
For all your international watching needs, check LiveSoccerTV.com.