Pardew - We can't miss out
Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is targeting a third-place finish in the Premier League in order not to miss out on the Champions League.
Last Updated: 28/04/12 9:17am
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew is targeting a third-place finish in the Premier League in order to avoid the heartbreak of missing out on the UEFA Champions League.
If Chelsea win the European Cup, having reached the final where they will face Bayern Munich in Germany on 19th May, only England's top three teams will qualify for next season's competition.
That possible scenario has consequently added extra pressure on Newcastle, Tottenham and Arsenal, who had already been involved in a season-long, tight battle to finish just in the top four.
Having already performed wonders in giving Newcastle a chance of qualifying for the Champions League, Pardew is determined not to be denied and is setting his sights on third position.
Newcastle currently sit fourth and trail Arsenal by three points, but they have a game in hand included in an end-to-the-season schedule which involves Saturday's trip to relegation-threatened Wigan before matches against Chelsea, Manchester City and Everton.
"We have got a possibility of finishing third, so that is what we are going to try and do," Pardew said at a media conference which was broadcast on Sky Sports News.
It will be a demanding task for Newcastle given their remaining fixtures, particularly against a Wigan team who are attempting to avoid the drop and the trip to Chelsea on 2nd May before the following match against title-chasing Manchester City on 6th May.
Asked how feasible it is for Newcastle to finish third, Pardew said: "Difficult. We have some tough games. All the games are tough now, though.
"When you come up against these bottom sides, they are fighting for their lives.
"We have got that on Saturday and it is going to make it very difficult."