Last week brought reports that an important pre-Euros England friendly was to be played at either St James Park or the Stadium of Light.

The Mail said that their information was that in the build up to this summer’s tournament, Roy Hodgson wanted to play Portugal at Wembley, as well as two matches at Premier League grounds.

With Manchester United and Manchester City claimed to be competing as a venue for one of the games, then the two north east clubs vying for the other.

Tuesday morning sees a follow up story by The Telegraph, with the opposition lined up for the north east game said to be Australia and a provisional date of Friday 27 May put forward, only 15 days before England begin their Euros finals matches.

St James Park hosts the Rugby League Magic Weekend once again but this takes place in Newcastle on Saturday 21 May and Sunday 22 May, leaving plenty of time to get the stadium in shape to potentially host this prestige England friendly.

The January transfer window has of course brought some surprising but welcome renewed interest in the England set-up, with Jonjo Shelvey and Andros Townsend having the added carrot of potentially making the England Euros squad (see the betting on the players to make that squad HERE) – if they do the business for Newcastle.

England kick off their 2016 Euros finals against Russia on June 11, then Wales (June 16) and Slovakia (June 20).

Whilst Wembley was being rebuilt, St James Park hosted three England matches.

England defeated Albania 2-0 on 5 September 2001 in a World Cup qualifier.

Then followed that with a 3-0 friendly win over Ukraine on 18 August 2004.

Then finally, another World Cup qualifier saw England defeat Azerbaijan 2-0 on 30 March 2005.