With 3 games left to play and one automatic promotion place gone, Newcastle face the final hurdle in gaining promotion to England’s top tier.
How Newcastle can get promoted
There are two ways Newcastle can get automatically promoted. One way is if Huddersfield fail to win their game in hand against Fulham and Newcastle beat Preston on Monday. The other way is if Newcastle win 6 points from the remaining 3 matches, they’ll go up that way regardless of Huddersfield’s results. Fulham are a very strong side who have won 4 out of their 5 matches this month; including three 3-1 wins in a row over Ipswich, Norwich, and Aston Villa. In a must win match for Huddersfield, this will be the ultimate test of character.
Newcastle’s last 3 fixtures are a home match against Preston North End, an away trip to Cardiff, and finally a home match against Barnsley. Realistically, all three matches should be easy wins however we are talking about Newcastle United.
Newcastle have already faced Preston twice this season, once in the league and one in the EFL Cup, winning 2-1 and 6-0 respectively. In the 2-1 win Mitrovic scored both goals; in the 6-0 win Mitrovic scored two, Diame scored 2, Ritchie scored one, and Perez scored one. It’s mathematically impossible for them to reach the Play-Offs so this is a nothing match for them. Newcastle should use this to their advantage as Preston won’t be up for this match.
The second match is a trip to Cardiff. Again, Cardiff cannot reach the Play-Offs, so this another meaningless match. The last time these two teams met, Newcastle ran out 2-1 winners with Atsu and Gouffran claiming the goals. Cardiff come into this match into good form; winning 3, drawing one, and losing two. As long as Newcastle go into this match with the right mind frame, this should be an easy 3 points.
On the last day of the season, Newcastle will play Barnsley at St James’ Park. Hopefully, this match should be the curtain closer to a long and hard Championship season with promotion already guaranteed. If Newcastle do finish second, they’ll be presented with a trophy for gaining promotion. Whatever your opinion on this, it’ll be nice to see Newcastle lift a trophy in front of 50,000 fans.