Newcastle vs Southampton live-score-carabao-cup-latest-updates
It might be easy to forget that within the maelstrom that is transfer deadline day that there is some football, a semi-final no less, to enjoy this evening.
Newcastle welcome Southampton to St James’s Park for the second leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final with a 1-0 lead over Saints following last week’s clash on the south coast.
For the home side this is a huge 90 minutes. Newcastle’s passionate fanbase has not seen their side in a major final since the 1999 FA Cup final – where they left heartbroken after a loss to Manchester United.
They now have the chance to break that drought and in so doing continue what has been a remarkable season to date under Eddie Howe.
Loftier goals do lie ahead but patience has been a hallmark of Newcastle under their controversial new Saudi owners, with them appearing willing to climb the greasy pole of English football in a steady manner.
That process will reach a key milestone should they qualify tonight, with a clash with Manchester United in the final seeming most likely.
In truth, Newcastle should be in a better position after last week’s first leg. They dominated Saints for much of the 90 minutes at St Mary’s in a match that lacked quality and should really have netted at least twice more.
With the surge of the St James’s Park crowd behind them, it’s easy to see Newcaste coming out of the traps quickly tonight as they look to put this one to bed.
Which begs the question: can Saints make a good fist of this? They had their moments in the first leg and had Nick Pope not made a string of excellent second-half stops they would have got on the scoresheet themselves.
Therein lies the problem for Nathan Jones though as his side has been one for whom goals have been difficult to come by this season. It’s been 23 games in all competitions since Saints scored more than twice in a game.
You feel for them to have any shot tonight, that’s a run they will need to break.