A poll on The Mag asked Newcastle United fans about this run of three away games against teams in the top five, what would be the minimum points return that could qualify as ‘success’.
By far the most popular answer was 5 points, twice as many votes as any other.
Supporters voting with their heads and going for the lowest number that would give Newcastle at least one win AND see them unbeaten – thereby not giving any leg up to our rivals.
The next most popular were 7 (19%) and 6 (16%) points, no doubt hoping that the two wins would come against Brighton and Huddersfield, now that Reading have dropped to a distant fifth (13 points behind NUFC).
9 – 5%
7 – 19%
6 – 16%
5 – 37%
4 – 13%
3 – 6%
2 – 1%
1 – 3%
That dramatic win over Brighton has moved the goalposts but if the same fans were asked again, they probably wouldn’t be any more greedy now, despite having banked three points already.
It was always a toss up as to whether Brighton or Huddersfield was the most important of the two and now one has been defeated, a point on Saturday would still ensure Newcastle went beyond the weekend still top of he Championship.
This is the business end and in Rafa Benitez, Newcastle maybe have their trump card, when you have been three goals down in the Champions League final, what is a 46 match slog in the English second tier by comparison?
It is proving an interesting episode in the Spaniard’s career and as Norwich and Villa are proving, neither keeping most of your Premier League players or spending vast amounts of money, are any guarantees of success in this dog eat dog 10 month campaign.
Only 12 games, 12 cup-ties (Champions League finals) to go, a return to the Premier League could almost be reaching its tipping point – if we hold our nerve.
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