Matt Ritchie scored the goal on Wednesday night that looked to have added another three points to Newcastle’s total, only for that freak/daft last minute effort to knock a couple of those points off.

With Brighton losing at Huddersfield last (Thursday) night, it means Newcastle are now one behind Chris Hughton’s team on 59 points.

Matt Ritchie has plenty experience of the Championship and as well as talking about the QPR match and Derby tomorrow, he has also said how many points Newcastle need to be aiming for.

The winger says ‘we know we need to get in and around that 90 point mark’ and is confident the team will do it.

In 2009/10 Newcastle United topped the table with 102 points, with West Brom runners-up on 91 and Forest a distant third with 79 points.

The following six years have seen only one team finish second in the Championship with 90 points or more.

Club in second place points totals:

2015/16 – 89 points

2014/15 – 89 points

2013/14 – 93 points

2012/13 – 79 points

2011/12 – 88 points

2010/11 84 points

In that 2013/14 season it was Burnley who finished second with 93 points, Derby a distant third with 85 points.

As for Newcastle this season, the 59 points from 28 games so far, comes at an average of 2.10 points per game, if they keep that rate up then NUFC would have 97 points.

To get to 90 points, Newcastle need 31 points from 18 games, which equals 1.72 points per match, well below how they have done so far this season.

The bottom line is winning 10 of the remaining 18 games (and one draw) would give Newcastle 90 points and if averaging four points every two matches, that would see them well over (95 points) what is almost certainly needed.

So forgetting about Brighton a point ahead and that late QPR goal, Newcastle are well ahead in terms of being on course for automatic promotion.

We just all need to keep it going.

Matt Ritchie talking to NUFC TV:

“I think we have to stay positive (after QPR), on another night we score the third goal and win 3-1 and move on to the next one.

“I’m the same as everybody else in the dressing room, never thought it (promotion) would be easy, was never going to be a gimme.

“A bit of a kick in the teeth the way we dropped the two points (v QPR).

“I have been in the Championship a few times and it is certainly not plain sailing, it is a rocky ride and we have to be ready for that. The fans have to stick with us, stick positive, we need their support.

“I was delighted to score the second goal but disappointed it didn’t mean more – I’m hoping I can continue to help the team.

“We know we need to get in and around that 90 point mark and we will there or thereabouts. 

“Its going to be tight but we are really up for the challenge.

“It was a fantastic work ethic from QPR and we needed to match that, I think we did so, more so in the second half.

“Derby is going to be a tough game, as they all are.”