Newcastle v Benfica: Alan Pardew warns Benfica his side could spring late show in the Europa League

The Magpies trail 3-1 from the first leg

Alan Pardew has warned Benfica to beware another Newcastle late show as he prepares for a huge four days in the club's topsy-turvy season.

Striker Papiss Cisse dragged the Magpies five points clear of the Barclays Premier League relegation zone with an injury-time winner against Fulham on Sunday having done much the same against Stoke and Anzhi Makhachkala in previous weeks.

Derby rivals Sunderland head for St James' Park on Sunday for a fixture which has taken on added importance for both clubs this season, but before that, Benfica will arrive on Tyneside on Thursday evening defending a 3-1 Europa League quarter-final lead.

Pardew knows his side faces an uphill task to make it to the last four, but he is equally well aware of the resilience and fighting spirit within his squad.

He told the Chronicle: "We just need to get ourselves in a good position. If we can get a goal with 20 minutes to go, we can do it - that's the agenda for me.

"Our fans need to understand on Thursday, in the quarter-final of the Europa League, that if we go gung-ho looking for two quick goals, we are just going to get killed.

"They [Benfica] have got real quality on the break. We have got to be very intelligent and we have got to be patient."

Whatever happens on Thursday evening, Pardew and his players will have to be ready to go again three days later for a derby encounter which matters more than any other fixture.

However, he has no worries that they will be.

He said: "Sunday takes care of itself. We know what it's about."

PA

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