Southampton ready for 'massive run' - Pellegrino


Benitez has targeted 40 points for safety and three more wins should guarantee Newcastle a second successive season in the Premier League.

Three points on Saturday could potentially lift the Magpies as high as 13th, as they look to eliminate the possibility of relegation.

Newcastle have now embarked on a three-week gap without a game because of a combination of the FA Cup quarter-finals and the forthcoming global break.

Dwight Gayle set up Kenedy for his second goal in the 29th minute, and Ritchie completed the scoring with a fine strike after the break.

You had Nathan Ake who was on loan at Bournemouth for half a season in 2016/17 and after impressing, they instantly laid out £20m to get the deal done last summer.

'We will try to keep everyone together.

Mauricio Pellegrino's team will be hoping that this hoodoo still holds over the Magpies as a win will take them 3 points above their rivals in what's looking an increasingly tense scramble towards the end of the season for the South Coast club.

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It's not hyperbolé to say the future of Newcastle and Southampton could look much rosier or gloomier depending on the outcome here. His goals will help that. "We know they have pace up front. He doesn't give it away easily, and he gives us more control".

Asked if his players would be allowed to drink while they are away, Benitez replied: "Yes". His confidence is good, and he has the possibility to express himself here.

- Newcastle kept a clean sheet for the first time in 13 league games against Southampton, since a 1-0 win in October 2003. "We are confident we will stay up, we have confidence in our team and we are doing well". Southampton have hardly been pulling up any trees in the Premier League over the past few years but they never sunk this low and are in real danger of going back to The Championship. "We need to continue to work as we have been, concentrate on that and hopefully we can keep picking up points".

Newcastle: Dubravka 7, Yedlin 7, Lascelles 7, Lejeune 8, Dummett 7, Ritchie 8, Shelvey 9, Diame 8, Kenedy 9, Pere 8, Gayle 7.

James Ward-Prowse has been a regular for Pellegrino recently but was an unused sub in the last game.

Chelsea youngster Kenedy has scored his very first goal for temporary employers Newcastle United against Southampton today.