By Danny Wright
Brighton manager Chris Hughton has admitted that he expects Newcastle to beat Barnsley in their final game of the season at St. James’ Park on Sunday.
Rafa Benitez’s side know that they have to better Brighton’s result at Aston Villa in order to win the Championship title.
Hughton, a former Magpies boss, understands that the title is in his hands going into the season finale but has hinted that Newcastle’s home form could be something to consider going into their clash with Barnsley.
“We have to go for the win. In my opinion, and it’s certainly no disrespect towards Barnsley, I expect Newcastle to win,” said Hughton, as quoted by the Newcastle Chronicle in their live blog on Saturday at 12:08pm.
“They’re at home and it’s their last game, but it’s never easy in this division and we found that out against a good Bristol City team in our last home game.
“It’s also been shown that Newcastle have been very good away from home but had some difficult results at home. But we have to look at it this way; Newcastle will win their game and we’ll have to get a win to clinch the title”
Brighton have led the way in the second-tier since they beat Birmingham in early April.
However defeats to both Norwich and Bristol have followed just weeks after their automatic promotion to the Premier League was confirmed.
Newcastle are just a point behind the Seagulls going into their home clash with Paul Heckingbottom’s Barnsley.
However the Magpies have a superior goal difference, which means that even a draw could be good enough for them to clinch their fourth second-tier title.
If Hughton’s men can equal or better Newcastle’s result, they would lift the most prestigious piece of silverware in their 115 year history.
In other Newcastle news, Rob Elliot has identified the players that should be fearing their St. James’ Park futures.