Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has expressed his desire to deliver Europa League success to the Premier League club.
Pardew’s side face Ukrainian outfit Metalist Kharkiv on Thursday and though they are just two points and four places above the Premier League relegation zone, the Englishman says he will not rest key personnel.
English sides have often treated the Europa League as an inconvenience, but Pardew is proud to be in the competition and determined to make it worthwhile.
“It’s competition we’d all love to win,” Pardew told his club’s official website.
“It’s difficult to get through the group stage, make no mistake, so we don’t want that hard work to be for nothing.
“But the last 16 is in our reach and there could be some big ties ahead for us. I’m sure our fans would relish bringing more big European nights to St James’ Park so we’ll be doing everything we can to progress and deliver that.”
The 51-year-old was keen to stress that he will pick a strong side for the clash against the Ukrainian visitors, and lauded Newcastle’s new-found squad depth courtesy of their January splurge.
“Metalist are a good side, you just have to look at the teams they finished above in their group to realise that, so they’ll get our full respect,” Pardew added.
“I’ll be picking a strong side for Thursday. The new lads who arrived last month have given us greater depth, so I’ll take advantage of that with my team selection.”