It was the minute of the night in Monaco as everybody drew a breath when Newcastle were named in Champions League Team F.
Back on Tyneside, though, that large-eyed shock swiftly turned into sheer enjoyment.
Formatting meant that of the three teams still left when Newcastle ended up drawn, a trio of Paris Saint-Germain, Borussia Dortmund and AC Milan was the hardest decide on, but also the most thrilling.
So when the inescapable happened for most fans, the excitement about a 20-calendar year return reached fever-pitch owing to the European status on demonstrate.
Flares and tifos at the Parc des Princes, the Yellow Wall in Dortmund, and footballing heritage at San Siro, absent visits hardly get significantly better, but when it comes down to the on-pitch issues, issues again home might demonstrate to be even far more significant.
A packed St. James’ Park could well be decisive from teams with remarkable knockout pedigree, and supporters and authorities are sure that the 3 travelling giants are in for a shock.
Previous Magpies boss and talkSPORT host Alan Pardew defined: “It’s likely to be incredibly, quite tough for individuals teams to get benefits at St. James’ Park.
“We obtained to the quarter-finals of the Europa League with Benfica and the atmosphere was unbelievable, I cannot even imagine what it’s likely to be like for a Champions League game.
“I imagine it is a difficult connect with to get out of this group, but they’ve got a terrific probability, and if Eddie [Howe] can do that it will be a true feather in his cap because it is a hard, difficult team.”
Club legend Alan Shearer summed up fans’ feelings, unable to stop grinning as he reported: “So this is what all the Geordies preferred, Newcastle in the Champions League, and wow it didn’t disappoint.
Most go through in Champions League
“What a draw, PSG, Dortmund and AC Milan, I can just envision 5 or 6 thousand followers heading mad in Milan, Dortmund and Paris.
“What a attract, Geordies will be delighted, it’s what we all desired, it’s what we labored so difficult for very last season, to get again amongst the massive boys, and we’ve undoubtedly completed that.”
Exterior of the exhilaration, can Newcastle do it? Can they make it into the knockouts at the 1st time of asking back in the competitors? Properly the bookies have them next behind PSG.
And talkSPORT’s resident European soccer expert, Kevin Hatchard, can see why.
“I assume it’s incredible, I consider they should really embrace it, they can get as a result of,” he commenced.
“I know I said it is the team of loss of life, and it is, but you glimpse at individuals 4 sides, Paris will be the favourites, but I wouldn’t say that there is a great deal involving the other a few.
“I could see any blend likely by means of, Paris will go by means of but the other three will be scrapping for that remaining put and any of them could get it.”
Likely even even more than that was two-time Champions League winner Owen Hardgraves, who was ready to give his European point of view on affairs much too.
The former Bayern man absolutely is not amazed by the mess at Paris, with the club keeping onto star gentleman Kylian Mbappe, in spite of seemingly getting desperate to get rid of him right before his contract operates out.
Newcastle do not have these kinds of distractions, and won’t just be a job for Dortmund and Milan, according to the previous England global.
“They’re such a outstanding facet, the way they get the job done both of those on and off the ball,” he defined.
“Eddie Howe has completed an incredible occupation to get this team of players into the Champions League, and I like the squad depth.
“[Sandro] Tonali is a good addition, another ball participant to go with [Bruno] Guimaraes and Joelinton in that midfield. I’m wanting forward to viewing Newcastle in the Champions League.
“I consider Eddie Howe has got a fantastic group of players to go and contend. I wouldn’t be stunned if they get it suitable, they even top rated that group.”
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