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Newcastle United now set to have ex-players in Champions League and Europa League finals

4 years ago

Both the Champions League and Europa League now look to be set to feature former Newcastle players.

Liverpool took Roma apart 5-2 on Tuesday night, racing into a 5-0 lead, before two late goals gave the visitors some faint hope.

The return game takes place on Wednesday with sadly much of the focus set to be on what happens off the pitch – but Liverpool will surely not throw this one away.

Gini Wijnaldum was determined to leave Newcastle after only one season ended in relegation and Rafa Benitez used the £25m fee towards rebuilding the team for promotion.

Wijnaldum came off the bench after only 18 minutes for the unfortunate Oxlade-Chamberlain with the score still goalless, playing a full part in the dramatic first leg win.

It seems a long time ago now but another one-time Newcastle player also featured, it is now 10 years ago since he left St James Park, but James Milner is still proving a real star for Liverpool, playing the full 90 minutes on Tuesday night.

Real Madrid are the likely opponents in the final, having won 2-1 at Bayern Munich on Wednesday.

Just like Wijnaldum, Florian Thauvin is another who was determined to get away from Newcastle after a disastrous move which surely could have worked out far far better if Rafa Benitez had been at NUFC when he arrived.

Finally leaving permanently last summer, Thauvin was as usual Marseille’s star man on Thursday night.

He scored the first goal as Marseille beat Red Bull Salzburg in the first leg of their Europa League semi-final, making them hot favourites to go through when visiting  Austria next Thursday.

Arsenal missed a golden chance though, playing against 10 men for 80 minutes they took the lead through Lacazette at the Emirates but the game ended 1-1 as Griezmann scored late on.


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