DEMBA Ba is determined to fire Newcastle United in to Europe.
The striker has already banged in 16 goals this season is hungry for more between now and the end of the campaign.
Ba hasn’t netted for five games and Sunday’s opponents West Bromwich Albion are now in his sights.
However, the 26-year-old’s main objective is helping Newcastle, sixth in the Premier League with nine games left to play, back into Europe after an absence of five years.
“If I can score more goals before the end of the season, I’ll be more than happy,” Ba told SportMail.
“I’ll try hard to score some other goals, but the most important thing is to get into Europe. If we can do that, it’ll be good.
“Getting into Europe would be something big for me and the team.
“Newcastle are a club which should play in Europe – we are a big club.
“When you look at the stadium and see the fans, the city is all about football.
“We need to get back in Europe and stay there for a while.”
He added: “It’s going to be very hard on Sunday. We know a bit about West Brom – they came here and beat us.
“When we go there we can’t make the same mistakes we made when they played here and we have to do them what they did to us and win.”
Ba was speaking at an educational event for schoolchildren yesterday organised by the North-East-based charity Show Racism the Red Card.
l NILE Ranger has the attributes to become “a hell of a player” if he can apply himself on and off the field, according to Willie Donachie.
The striker made his comeback from injury for Newcastle United’s reserves in last night’s 4-2 defeat to Chelsea in front of 400 fans at Whitley Park.
Ranger – who suffered an ankle problem playing for loan club Barnsley in January – had a hand in both Newcastle’s goals, scored by Ryan Donaldson and Jeff Henderson and second string coach Donachie was impressed with his all-round performance.
The 20-year-old showed immense promise early in his career at the club.
However, his time on Tyneside has also been beset by off-the-field issues.
Ranger’s potential as a footballer isn’t in doubt, and Donachie just hopes he’s able to fulfil it.
“Nile could be a really good player if his attitude was good,” Donachie said. “He has still got a lot of growing up to do.
“He has a lot going for him. Nile’s so privileged to be playing for Newcastle. Everybody in Newcastle would give their right arm to be doing what he’s doing.
“It can be very frustrating, because some of the other lads who are leaving have a spot-on attitude.
“Unfortunately, they haven’t got his gifts. If he gets a bit of their attitude, he could be a hell of a player.”