Newcastle United have played five, won 3, drawn one and lost one so far in the 2020/1 season and have got off to the best start in Premier League and Cup since 2012/3 under Alan Pardew, sit 10th in the Premier League just two points off The Champions League spots and a win tonight and passage into the Quarter Final of The Carabao Cup can cement an excellent start to the season for Geordie manager Steve Bruce.
By way of comparison, it took Rafa Benitez 11 Premier League games in 2018/9 to reach the four point total Bruce has mustered in just three top flight games & Benitez's side were knocked out of The Carabao Cup that season as well by Nottingham Forest in the worst start to a season in NUFC history.
Steve Bruce's men play Newport County at 5.30pm on Wednesday evening having earned the right to play live on SKY after the club's All-time Record Away Win last week saw The Magpies smash Morecambe 7-0 at The Globe Arena. Geordie fans previously had to pay £10 for an EFL pass to watch the Carabao Cup games but eclipsing even Keegan's Entertainers' records, the RevoBruceTion will now be televised.
Brazilian no. 9 Joelinton was key to the dominant performance over the League Two side coming into his own scoring two goals including the game's first and 25-yard beauty to fire Newcastle to within touching distance of The Carabao Cup Quarter-Finals.
If a hefty win was to be expected at Morecambe, Bruce's Magpies faced Mourinho next and to their credit, wrapped up a second good result in four days, seizing an unlikely point at the death from the London side who had thrashed Southampton 5-2 last weekend, with a penalty from virtually the last kick of the game after some heroic defending for 95 minutes and some world class goalkeeping from Karl Darlow:
If the penalty award was controversial, the penalty itself from Callum Wilson was class and it was the striker's second goal in three Premier League games for Newcastle having already notched the opener in an impressive 2-0 win Away to a West Ham side who hammered Wolves 4-0 at The Olympic Stadium last night:
All three of Bruce's attacking signings - Wilson, Jeff Hendrick and Ryan Fraser scored on their competitive debuts, Premier League ready players hitting the ground running for The Magpies specifically as Bruce had bought them to do:
Scottish winger Ryan Fraser notched on his St. James' Park debut against Blackburn in the Second Round of The Carabao Cup to bag Newcastle a 3rd round trip to Morecambe and having seen Joelinton notch twice and up close & personal in training, he's promised to help the dedicated forward score even more:
"For me as a player he is only going to get better.
"With me coming in I'm trying to help and looking to get into the box where he wants the ball.
"I will ask him where he wants the ball, if I'm here, I will ask him which spot he wants the ball in, sometimes it will come off, sometimes it won't.
"He is a player who wants to improve everyday.
"I like that and respect it massively because there's not many players like him out there nowadays. That is a massive thing."
Tonight Joelinton might be flanked by both Fraser and Allan Saint-Maximin, who began training again this week after a slight injury problem and he gave fans a reminder of what he could do repping a goal he scored in The Europa League for Nice on social media:
Bruce has vowed to play a strong team and have a real go tonight, knowing as Geordie himself what success in a Cup competition would mean to Newcastle supporters:
"Look we've got a chance to park this competition and get to a quarter-final when December comes around.
"I know what it means to the supporters and we have had a favourable draw so let's try.
"We can get to a quarter-final again, how good would that be?"
and a win would be the second Quarter-Final he has guided The Magpies into in just over 12 months since joining last summer:
Newport, for their part, have vowed not to make it easy for their more glamorous visitors from The Premier League with striker Padraig Amond saying:
"Let’s just say, the players will not get the luxury of Spurs at Rodney Parade.
"Due to COVID restrictions Newcastle won’t be in the proper changing rooms – which are too tight – instead they’ll be in a marquee at the back of the stand.
"They need to hope it’s not windy and raining because there’s no heating out there and it will sure get cold before and after the game.
"You can do all you like to make it look nice before the game – and I’m sure the staff will – but it’s still just a marquee, with none of the home comforts the players will be used to at Premier League level.
"Newcastle United are in for a culture shock tonight – the only benefit they’ve got is that there are no fans here, because it’s a very tight ground and the fans are right on top of you. This is not an easy place for anyone to come to, especially when the pitch starts to cut up.”
Yet if Newcastle turn up like we know they can and do a professional job against a team that have knocked out Watford in Cup competitions in recent seasons, there's no way Newport will be able to live with them and Bruce's Mags will be in the hat for the next round. Pre-Match Prediction - Newcastle United 3 Newport County 1. Don't Stop Believin