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Pardew discusses Benfica with Lennon

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has consulted Celtic manager Neil Lennon ahead of the Europa League tie with Benfica.

The Bhoys faced the Portuguese giants twice in the Champions League group stages, drawing 0-0 at Parkhead and losing 2-1 away, and the Magpies coach said he would seek advice from wherever he can get it.

“We have good contacts regarding this team. I know this city quite well and I have some contacts here who know Benfica well,” Pardew told reporters.

“There is also Neil Lennon who we have been in contact with. I think it is important to get as much information as you can – as I’m sure Benfica have done with us.”

With Thursday’s hosts top of the Portugese Liga and having won 15 of the last 16 games at the Estadio de Luz, Pardew is well aware that his side will be in for a tough match but is optimistic that their home form can see them through to the semi-finals if they can keep the first leg tight enough.

“It is a big test for us because I think with any team that is on such a roll as Benfica, it is going to be difficult,” the Newcastle manager added, “but I think at St James’ Park we can beat anybody – we have no doubt about that game.

“Here, we need to put on a performance so we can take something back to give us a chance (in the second leg).”

Wed 3 April, 2013
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