Pardew eyes cup tonic to derby defeat

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has called on his side to put their derby defeat behind them by embracing the prospect of cup success.

Newcastle United Manager Alan Pardew

Magpies fans treat every match with Sunderland as if it were a final but the bitter taste of Sunday's 2-1 defeat would be lessened somewhat by an actual shot at silverware.

Pardew saw no reason to play down that possibility on the eve of the Capital One Cup fourth-round clash against Manchester City at St James' Park.

He feels success in the competition represents a realistic goal for the club, who need a pick-me-up after losing bragging rights to the Black Cats.

"The derby was a really demanding game on the legs and on the emotions. We're disappointed for the fans and ourselves," said Pardew.

"But if we could beat Manchester City I think it would get people talking because then we'd be down to the last eight and it all becomes a bit serious then.

"I think any team in the Premier League can consider this a tournament they can win. For the Champions League clubs maybe it's a little down on their agenda but it's high on our agenda.

"For us this year it is a priority. We want to win a trophy for our fans.

"If we could get past Manchester City it would be a great way to put away the disappointment of Sunderland, but that's easier said than done."

For Pardew, coming up against one of the country's big guns is something of a mixed blessing.

Manuel Pellegrini's side were 4-0 winners over Newcastle on the opening day of the season, leaving Pardew in no doubt about their star quality, but he believes their priorities may lie elsewhere.

"It's still tough to beat them....they have a squad of 24 international players so we're coming up against 11 internationals even if it is a slightly weakened City team," he said.

"When they turn on their turbo chargers, with the players they've got, they're almost impossible to deal with.

"But they're vulnerable as well and particularly away from home results haven't been as good as they would like.

"That is some comfort for us, that we could catch them on an off night.

"If your desire to win something is stronger than the opposition, then it does give you a slight benefit. We'll be leaning on that for sure."

Pardew's hunger for a cup run will not stop him tinkering with his starting XI.

With a league match against title hopefuls Chelsea following on Saturday, he plans to freshen up his side against City - and insists those who benefit can win keep their place if they impress.

"We'll be strong (on Wednesday) but we're in a run of three games in six days and we've got to make sure we're at full tilt for the Premier League games.

"I've got three or four players I feel need to come in and play who have a chance of playing against Chelsea.

"It's an opportunity for players really close to the first team to make a stand for Chelsea. That question is in front of me: what team do I play versus Chelsea? I want a few people to give me a problem."



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