‘I don’t see’ - Chris Sutton makes bold prediction on Newcastle United’s FA Cup tie at Sheffield Wednesday
The Magpies will hope to progress when they face the League One side on Saturday evening.
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That was the verdict of former Blackburn Rovers and Chelsea striker Chris Sutton as he assessed Eddie Howe’s prospects of moving a step closer to landing major silverware at St James Park. United will face a trial by television as the tie will take place in front of the BBC cameras at Hillsborough as they look to avoid a repeat of their shock FA Cup third round exit 12 months ago.
On that occasion, League One club Cambridge United produced a giant-killing as a Joe Ironside goal and an inspired performance from goalkeeper Dimitar Mitov gave them a 1-0 win over a Magpies side containing recent signing Kieran Trippier for the first time.
Howe’s men will face another third tier club on Saturday when they face the in-form Owls, who ironically head into the tie on the back of a 5-0 hammering of Cambridge on Monday afternoon. Darren Moore’s side currently sit in an automatic promotion spot in League One and are unbeaten over 90 minutes in their last 16 games in all competitions.
Sutton believes they will provide a stern test for Newcastle - but insisted the Magpies can ‘survive a bit of a scare’ to secure their place in Monday’s fourth round draw.
Writing in his regular BBC Sport predictions column, he said: “Eddie Howe used to be known for making 10 or even 11 changes to his team for FA Cup ties when he was in charge at Bournemouth, so it will be interesting to see what he does when his Newcastle side travel to Sheffield Wednesday. Newcastle are doing brilliantly in the Premier League, and have got a Carabao Cup quarter-final against Leicester coming up on Tuesday. Their fans already love Howe - imagine how they would feel about him if he lands them a major trophy?
“This is a tricky tie, though, with Wednesday in good form and going for automatic promotion. I don’t see a repeat of last season, when Newcastle were upset by another League One side, Cambridge, at St James’ Park, but they might have to survive a bit of a scare to make it through to round four.”