In recent years, it has been made clear by the club that cup competitions are not a priority and that the manager must focus all his efforts on the Premier League.

Alan Pardew duly obliged by fielding weakened teams in both the League Cup and FA Cup.

John Carver did the same away to Leicester City in last season’s FA Cup.

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But with Steve McClaren’s arrival, there could be a change in the blueprint, seeing Newcastle United ‘go for it’ in the domestic cups, with the aim of getting to Wembley.

Out of the 20 Premier League clubs, Newcastle are 1 of 3 who have not been to the new Wembley Stadium, since it was opened in 2007.

AFC Bournemouth and Leicester City are the only two other sides who have not played a game at the 90,000 seater.

I recently went to Wembley for the first time, witnessing Premier League champions Chelsea take on FA Cup holders Arsenal in the Community Shield.

There was no big game feel, no energy outside of the ground from fans, a lack of atmosphere inside the stadium and no buzz after the game either, with both fans joining hands to sing about their hatred for Tottenham Hotspur.

I know it was only the Community Shield, which is seen by some as a glorified pre-season friendly, but Chelsea and Arsenal fans had been regular visitors to Wembley since its opening that the day was no longer special.

A lot of my friends who support Sunderland speak of the joy their appearance at Wembley brought, despite falling to a 3-1 defeat to Manchester City in the League Cup Final.

It was their first appearance at the national stadium and they appeared to make the most of it, with Wembley washed out in a sea of red and white. I know that may be a painful sight for us Newcastle fans…

So with a new season brings fresh optimism. We all know we aren’t going to be challenging for Europe, but there is no reason we can’t challenge for a domestic trophy.

Please Steve, don’t follow the attitude of your predecessors, go all guns blazing, try and take us to Wembley and we’ll paint it black and white.

You can follow James on Twitter @jrutherford11 

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