Premier League. Howe eyes strong showing at Spurs

Eddie Howe's pre-Tottenham media briefing in full
08 Dec 23

The key talking points from Eddie Howe's pre-Tottenham Hotspur media briefing

The Magpies head to North London hoping for what would be their first win on the road since September's 8-0 thrashing of Sheffield United, with the contest coming hot on the heels of their midweek reverse at Goodison Park.

But United triumphed 2-1 on their last visit to Spurs' home in October 2022 when goals from Callum Wilson and Miguel Almirón sealed an impressive victory for Newcastle.

And Howe wants his side to turn in a display of a similar standard when they face Ange Postecoglou's men in the capital on Sunday (kick-off 4:30pm GMT), with the Magpies head coach hoping to be able to welcome back some of his players who have been absent through injury in recent weeks as their heavy festive schedule continues to take its toll.

Here are some of the topics up for discussion at Howe's pre-match media briefing on Thursday night:

On what his side need to do to beat Spurs on Sunday...

"I think it would need a very similar performance to last year, where we were excellent. We were at our best defensively, we were at our best in attack as well - that was a memorable day, and that gave us a really big lift for what was ahead.

"It came at a key stage of the season, so we certainly know the importance of this match."

On the injuries in his squad and the reaction of his available players...

"When you're in my shoes you can only control what you can control, and some of the injuries we've had have just been things we've had no control over. We're missing not just some big players, but big personalities as well that make a difference within the group.

"But I have to say that I think the players have done so well to cope mentally with it. We've beaten some big teams with a hugely reduced squad and that should give us real confidence for what's ahead.

"If we can add some players back and they're in good condition, that would give us a huge lift."

On opposite number Postecoglou and his early impact at Spurs...

"I think Tottenham have certainly changed a lot of their build-up patterns. Their formation and the way they play is totally different.

"I've enjoyed watching them play - (they were) free-scoring early season, with a lot of interesting movements. He has done very well in a short period of time to implement his philosophy."

On a typically busy December and the Magpies' need to improve their away form...

"I think we always say it's season-defining, whatever period we're in. Certainly December was always going to be a big month for us with the sheer number of games that we have.

"Since the last international break we made a pretty good start to that with the three games (against Chelsea, Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester United), but we need to pick up our away form. I think that's absolutely crucial for us and we want to do that as quickly as possible."

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