Newcastle United boss Alan Pardew has targeted their home clash with the Canaries as the perfect chance to get back to winning ways.
The Magpies, confounding everyone’s pre-season opinion by challenging for a Champions League place, lost to a cruel, last-minute Thomas Vermaelen goal at Arsenal on Monday night.
And it’s to their credit that the Magpies are still well placed in sixth, considering they will be going into the contest with Paul Lambert’s Norwich without a win since February 5, when Aston Villa were beaten 2-1 at St James’ Park.
United have only picked up two points from the last 12 available and if they are to keep their fading top-four hopes alive, three points against City in front of the Sky cameras on Sunday is a must.
“We’ve got Norwich at home, and it looks like a great opportunity,” Pardew told the Newcastle Chronicle.
“I think our fans will be disappointed, and what we need is a pick-me-up now. We need to get a win – we’re well aware of that. No-one needs to tell us.”
But the Canaries have had one hell of a season themselves. And with Premier League safety inching ever closer, Norwich will be hoping to wrap things up as soon as possible.
Pardew would be foolish to underestimate this weekend’s opponents and the Toon chief is well aware that there are no easy games in the Premier League – especially with plenty of teams still fighting for survival.
Relegation-threatened Wolves fought back to gain a point at St James’ Park recently and United also came unstuck against Swansea and West Brom on terra firma.
“We’ll have to work like we did on Monday night if we’re going to get it. We’ll be under a lot of pressure.
“We hope our fans appreciate what we did (against Arsenal), and come and back us. I’ve got to pick a side that can win the game.”
Meanwhile, closer to home, League One Oldham Athletic have extended the loan agreement of City midfielder Tom Adeyemi until 9 April.
The 20-year-old’s loan spell expired at Boundary Park on 10 March, but it has now been renewed for a further month.
The Colney youth product has been one of Latics boss Paul Dickov’s key players this year, featuring 36 times and scored
three goals since joining the club back in the summer.
Adeyemi has since renewed his loan twice and is clearly impressing all at Boundary Park, with his goal now to stay in the North West until the end of the season.
“I am pleased because all along I have mentioned I wanted to see it through to the end of the season,” said Adeyemi, speaking to Oldham’s official website this week.
“I am enjoying my time here, and now I have another month here and another bank of games.”