STEVE Howey has urged Newcastle United to take a leaf out of Sunderland’s book as they continue their League Cup bid tonight.
Newcastle travel to Manchester City for a fourth round clash in a meeting between two of Howey’s former clubs.
United remain just two points above the Premier League’s relegation zone, despite two wins in a row, but Howey feels a cup run would benefit, rather than hinder, their hopes in the league.
Sunderland survived in the division last season after reaching the League Cup final, and Howey feels a similar achievement could have a positive impact on Newcastle.
He said: “Apparently the club have said the cups are not really one of their main concerns, but last year Sunderland were more or less dead and buried before they went on their cup run.
“Their run to the final helped to get them out of it, so it is important.
“It’s obviously going to be a difficult game for Newcastle tonight, but they’ve definitely got a chance.
“Even if Man City don’t send out their best side, though, they are going to be formidable as they’ve got such a strong squad.
“Newcastle haven’t got a great record there, but they will be buoyed by the win at Tottenham on Sunday.”
Defending champions City go into the game on the back of a 2-1 loss at West Ham on Saturday, and Howey believes they are beatable if Newcastle “upset” them.
He added: “If you get at them and don’t let them settle, like West Ham showed at the weekend, you can upset them.
“You rarely get a team that is unbeatable, and that has been shown this season.
“They lost at home to Stoke in the league, which was unexpected, and they might have one eye on the Champions League, so there is an opportunity there for Newcastle.
“A lot will depend on whether (Vincent) Kompany plays
“He is always their main centre half in the pairing, but you can get at the other two lads (Martin Demichelis and Eliaquim Mangala).”