Eddie Howe dismisses Champions League talk

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Newcastle United manager Eddie Howe maintained he will not talk about the Champions League until his side secures the qualification.

Newcastle moved one win away from qualifying for Champions League after a commanding 4-1 Premier League victory against Brighton and Hove Albion.

“The Champions League is so close, but so far away as well. We will enjoy tonight but we are focused on our next match,” said Howe, who has been reluctant to discuss his side’s top-four chances.

“We were just pleased with the performance, to beat a side of their quality. We are not looking too far ahead.

“When it’s done, I’ll talk about it for fun if you want.”

Brighton forward Deniz Undav flicked Kieran Trippier’s corner into his own net to give Newcastle the lead before the Magpies captain picked out Dan Burn from a free-kick to head in the second.

Brighton keeper Jason Steele was forced to make some good saves at the start of the second half keeping out Miguel Almiron’s effort before Undav slotted in 45 seconds later to give the visitors hope.

The Magpies however took control back and a composed Callum Wilson’s late finish and Bruno Guimares’ injury time stopper were enough to seal the Victory.

The win puts Newcastle on the verge of a return to the Champions League for the first time since they were knocked out at the qualifying stage in 2003-04.

Eddie Howe’s side, who are third in the League table know one win in their final two games will secure a top-four finish.

The Magpies are three points clear of fourth-placed Manchester United, who have played a game fewer, and four ahead of fifth-placed Liverpool, who also have two games left.

Brighton sit sixth and qualifying for the Europa League remains in their own hands with three matches left.

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