Gav - Yes!
To be honest, I was really glad to see the back of Newcastle and their fans when we relegated them back in May but the way they've gone on since really makes me wish we could play them tomorrow.
They need a reality check. I hope Fulham turn them over on Friday night to remind them of the situation they find themselves in currently, which is of course attempting to climb out of the second tier at the first time of asking.
I mean, this morning... all this squad number stuff has got my head done in over on Twitter.
They need another hiding off us to bring them down to earth. Simply put, I cannot be arsed with them getting carried away all season because they're beating teams like Rotherham and Burton Albion.
Short and sweet, but there we go.
Bowers - No!
I’ve said in past blogs that I hated playing Newcastle and, for me, last season was even worse especially in the knowledge that at least one of us would be relegated if not both.
The week leading up to the derby is nothing short of torture for me and the fear of losing to them intensifies as the game draws closer.
For me, it’s much worse playing them at the Stadium of Light which may come as a surprise because at home, I am that much more desperate to avoid defeat against them. I remember my first proper experience of this fixture when Ryan Taylor scored Newcastle’s winner in August 2011 and I had been so confident before that game we would win.
Safe to say, I have never been confident since.
The thought of Newcastle beating us on our own patch again petrified me when we played them at home for the next four meetings. At St James’ Park it’s not much better and while I don’t like the thought of losing there, I can at least stomach it. Defeat in March would have been awful but that was more to do with the position both clubs were in. Imagine if we lost there and every result since went the way they did; we would probably be playing a Championship game this week.
I’ve hated these relegation battles from the last four seasons but last season’s was worse for me. When Rafa Benitez was appointed up the road, the pessimist inside me really felt like there was a very good possibility of Newcastle staying up at our expense, especially as at that point it looked like it was going to be two from us both and Norwich to get relegated. I’ve always wanted Newcastle to go down and us to survive and thankfully we made that a reality last season.
For those reasons, you could imagine the relief and happiness I felt when we beat Everton in May to mathematically relegate Newcastle. I feel it’s sad thing for football in the North East when the most memorable thing we’ve done is stay up at Newcastle’s expense but that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it.
We could still get them in the cups obviously but my ideal season is for us to finish comfortably in mid-table, avoid Newcastle in the cups and they fail to get promoted.
I think they’ll go up but in the event we don’t play them in the next few years I may miss the Tyne-Wear derby but for now I’m grateful to see them in the league below us. I really hope it stays that way for a very long time.