Fri 5 Jan 2024, 10:36 by Ash Harrison

Eddie Howe now says 'amazing' Newcastle player faces a late fitness test ahead of Sunderland clash

Eddie Howe now says 'amazing' Newcastle player faces a late fitness test ahead of Sunderland clash
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Newcastle United face Sunderland tomorrow for the first time in almost eight years and Eddie Howe spoke to the press this morning ahead of the fixture.

Eddie Howe may not be from round these parts but he definitely knows the importance of this fixture and the affect the result can have on the city, so he will be doing all he can to ensure a Newcastle win.

Form and injuries are against him, however, and after a dreadful run of defeats, Howe's lads will have to muster every little bit of energy and fight they have going into this game.

A win over Sunderland could turn our season around

A win would see Newcastle progress to the fourth round of the FA Cup for the first time under Howe after having previously been knocked out by lower league opposition on two occasions: Cambridge United and Sheffield Wednesday, both League One sides at the time put Newcastle out of the competition at the first time of asking.

RB Kieran Trippier
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Tripps faces a late fitness test

There may be a gulf in class between the two sides, but that counts for naught in the FA Cup and Eddie Howe has learned that the hard way. He will therefore need as many of his best players ready and available. Something that's not really happened since the first day of the season.

Kieran Trippier, once hailed as 'amazing' by Heung Min-Son was expected to miss the game through injury, but this morning Eddie Howe confirmed (via The Chronicle) that the vice skipper will face a late fitness test and could be in contention for a place in the squad.

Trippier could make it but Wilson is definitely out

"Kieran will be given a late test today to see how he is. [On Callum] It's not too bad but it'll be enough to keep him out of the next two games."

Callum Wilson remains unavailable so it will be down to Alexander Isak to lead the line.

I can't believe it's almost here. It's like Christmas Eve, but Christmas Eve knowing your parents have been skint all year and you're not sure they have been able to get anything you've asked for.

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