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Howe full of relief after avoiding FA Cup upset
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Mitchell Fretton
Newcastle edged past Blackburn on penalties in the FA Cup
Newcastle edged past Blackburn on penalties in the FA Cup

Eddie Howe admits he felt a massive wave of relief after Newcastle squeezed past Blackburn on penalties in the FA Cup.

The Magpies booked their place in the quarter-finals but had to work extremely hard to overcome the Championship side, who would not go down without a fight.

Anthony Gordon opened the scoring for the visitors in the second half before Sammie Szmodics equalised 10 minutes from time to take the game to extra time and penalties.

But some heroic saves from Martin Dubravka meant that the Premier League outfit would advance, to the delight of 46-year-old Howe.

He said: "I think there is only one emotion and that is relief. I think it was a hard-fought cup tie.

"Both sides gave everything to get the win and didn't give an inch but we are delighted to be in the hat for the next round.

"They packed the backline and packed the midfield so it was difficult for us to penetrate them. It could have been better but we got that first goal and it was a really well-worked goal.

"The lads kept their heads and remained calm and I think every penalty was taken well."

And Howe was particularly proud of his side's efforts during such a hectic schedule.

He said: "I think when you see the season we have had and the situation we are in, this was never going to be an easy cup tie.

"Martin made some great saves that we needed him to make and we also missed some golden opportunities in the final third.

"The most important thing is that our season cracks on and we are thrilled to get through to the next round."


Newcastle UnitedFA Cup
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