Pardew expects tough tie

Pardew fielded a hugely understrength side at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday but was rewarded with a superb display.

An early goal from teenage forward Rolando Aarons and a second???half strike from substitute Moussa Sissoko was enough to see off a lacklustre City.

The draw subsequently paired Pardew???s side with Tottenham, who they beat 2-1 at White Hart Lane in the Premier League on Sunday as part of their ongoing three-game winning run.

“They’ll be fired up for us coming back after getting a win there, but if we’re going to win this competition we’re going to have to do it the hard way because we’ve done an outstanding job tonight and that’s really what I want to talk about,” said Pardew.

Newcastle face Liverpool in the league on Saturday and Pardew is keen for them to continue their good recent run, especially after having rested players with a view to them returning at the weekend.

“It’s important for us that we just keep this momentum going,” said the Newcastle boss. “We saved a couple tonight on purpose for Liverpool so we look forward to that.

“They’ve won as well so that makes for a really good game at the weekend and we aren’t looking any further than that.”

Pardew was also delighted to see midfielder Ryan Taylor play his first game since August 2012 after being sidelined with successive cruciate ligament problems.

“Ryan Taylor (was) a kind of story you’d read in some football magazine that was made up. He was outstanding in his first game after all that time. Brilliant,” he added.

Taylor was also understandably delighted with his return.

“A dream, everything, it all came true tonight,” he told Sports. “Two years of hard graft for myself just to get back playing football is a big thing for me, but what a performance that was from the lads.”

And goalkeeper Rob Elliott, in for the rested Tim Krul, paid tribute to the team and, in particular, Taylor.

“I think it was always there (confidence) it was just about getting results and now you’re seeing a difference in the team, but tonight’s all about Ryan,” he said.

“He’s epitomised everything about us today, two years of solid hard work, with set backs, and it just shows what we are like and I think everyone is buzzing for him and the fans – it’s a great night for us all.”

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