Where Newcastle United legend Alan Shear ranks ‘brilliant’ Tyne and Wear derby against country’s rivalries

Alan Shearer stood up for the Tyne-Wear derby as Micah Richards rubbished its notoriety

Newcastle United legend Alan Shearer named the 'brilliant' Tyne-Wear derby as the second greatest rivalry in England.

The former Magpies talisman was speaking on the Match of the Day Top 10 show with Gary Lineker and Micah Richards as the trio counted down the best rivalries in the country.

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Shearer put the North West derby between Liverpool and Manchester at number one, but clashes between Newcastle and Sunderland followed in second place.

Fellow pundit Micah Richards had put the Tyne-Wear derby in sixth place, to which Shearer replied: "Don't be ridiculous. Don't f***ing go there!

"He's just doing it for a reaction.

"He just wants a reaction from the Newcastle fans."

The two North Eastern teams haven't played one another since a 1-1 Premier League draw at St. James' Park in 2016.

Since then, Sunderland plunged down into the depths of League 1.

However, having booked their place in the play-off final against Wycombe Wanderers on Saturday, May 21.

The winner of that final will achieve promotion to the Championship and, should it be The Black Cats, the North East will be just one league away from having regular derby fixtures back.

Speaking about the atmosphere around the event, Shearer said: "They are brilliant.

"A great atmosphere and you get away with more than you do in a normal game.

"You have to win."

Alan Shearer relished derby day (Image: Getty Images)

Prompted by a chuckling Richards, Shearer was then forced to remember one of his less fond memories from the derby.

The striker recalled rocketing a penalty over the bar as Newcastle lost 2-1 against Sunderland.

He said: "We were beat, it was the last 10-15 minutes at home at the Gallowgate End.

"It's still travelling now [the penalty], it landed in the Metro station.

"The next morning, I felt terrible, I got a buzz off a neighbour saying to come to the top of the gates.

Sunderland are in the League One Play-Off Final this year (Image: Getty Images)

"There was a pile of s**t, hay, manure, fish guts, flour eggs, 10 ft high towering above the gates.

"Took me two or three hours to clean the s**t up.

"I don't know if it was Newcastle or Sunderland fans!"

Shearer ultimately had the last laugh as he reminded Richards of his final ever kick of a football - a successful penalty in the Tyne-Wear derby in 2006.