Kieran Trippier ‘delighted’ with Newcastle United’s ‘huge’ progress and makes Atletico Madrid comparison

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The Magpies captain played a lead role as his side secured a first cup final appearance since 1999.

Kieran Trippier reflected on the ‘huge steps’ Newcastle United have made in the last 12 months after they secured a place in the Carabao Cup Final.

The England full-back captained the Magpies on a memorable night at St James Park as two Sean Longstaff goals helped Eddie Howe’s men to a 3-1 aggregate win over Premier League rivals Southampton.

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The buoyant scenes at full-time were a complete contrast to the mood that had enveloped Tyneside prior to Trippier’s arrival last January when there were genuine concerns United were heading for a third relegation from the Premier League. However, an Eddie Howe-inspired upturn in form, coupled with clever investment and recruitment, now sees a place in the Champions League and silverware as realistic aims for the remainder of the season.

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Speaking after Tuesday night’s win, Trippier told Sky Sports: “I can only go back to when I first arrived and the team was in a difficult moment. I felt like I wanted to help as much as possible, helped the players I’m playing with. Me and Miggy (Almiron) have had a great relationship this season and I think that started in pre-season when we talked a lot.

“We give everything for the club, I am here for another couple of years now, and we are in a final. We have shown huge steps in a short period of time and the gaffer deserves huge credit because he works us really hard on the training pitch and all we do is give 100% for the supporters and that’s what they want to see.”

Trippier’s move to Tyneside saw him reunited with Magpies boss Howe after the duo worked together during the latter’s managerial reign at Burnley.

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And the former Tottenham Hotspur full-back compared his current manager to the one he left behind at Atletico Madrid when he agreed to move to St James Park.

He said: “I feel like when I was at Atletico, it was difficult with the teams we were competing against but the togetherness we had there with the manager Simeone, compared the manager we have here, it’s exactly the same. For Atletico, you have to run for the shirt, and it’s exactly the same here.”

The Magpies will discover their final opponents on Wednesday night when Manchester United head into the second leg of their tie with Nottingham Forest with a 3-0 lead.

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