‘No I don’t’ - Former Everton star delivers surprise verdict on Newcastle United’s Champions League hopes

The Match of the Day pundit gave a decisive answer to a question on the Magpies hopes of securing a Champions League spot.

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Former Everton star Leon Osman believes Newcastle United’s ‘momentum’ means they are now in position to claim a place in next season’s Champions League.

The Magpies have fully shaken off the impact of their Carabao Cup Final defeat against Manchester United and the 2-0 loss they suffered at Premier League title challengers Manchester City last month by securing maximum points in their last four games.

After moving into the top four with a home win against Manchester United on Sunday, Eddie Howe’s men were in clinical form as braces from Joelinton and Callum Wilson and a neat finish from substitute Alexander Isak allowed the Magpies to punish a haphazard defensive display from West Ham United by claiming a 5-1 win at the London Stadium.

That cemented Newcastle’s position in the top four and ensured they will head into the weekend fixtures sat three points clear of fifth-placed Tottenham Hotspur and with the benefit of holding a game in-hand over the North London outfit.

With Brighton and Hove Albion a further four points behind and Aston Villa nine points adrift of the Magpies, Howe’s side look to set to end the club’s decade-long absence from European competition. But former Everton midfielder Osman believes an ever longer absence from the continent’s elite club competition will be brought to an end as he tipped Newcastle to claim a Champions League spot for the first time since 2003.

“No I don’t,” he answered when asked if anyone could break into the top four ahead of Newcastle and the Red Devils.

“I think the two teams we have just seen have got a nice little gap emerging at a crucial moment when the run-in truly begins. Spurs have ran out of any kind of form, Brighton have probably given themselves too much to do. Those two (Newcastle and Manchester United) have found momentum so I don’t think it will change too much.”

Newcastle return to action on Saturday afternoon when they visit a Brentford that still have a chance of claiming a place in European competition.