Thursday 22 March 2018

Dummett determined to avoid drop

Newcastle defender Paul Dummett is preparing for the biggest game of his career
Newcastle defender Paul Dummett is preparing for the biggest game of his career

Paul Dummett is preparing for the biggest game of his career to date as Newcastle attempt to drag themselves out of relegation trouble on the final day of the Barclays Premier League season.

The 23-year-old Geordie remembers only too well the day the Magpies were relegated back in 2009, and is desperate not to go through that pain once again with only victory over West Ham at St James' Park on Sunday certain to assure the club of their continued presence in the top flight.

Dummett told nufcTV: "I have played in some big games before - when I was on loan in Scotland, a cup final, also probably one of the biggest ones was when I came on to make my debut against Manchester City in the Premier League.

"But I think this is probably going to be the biggest one because of the position the club is in, especially on the last day of the season to keep the club in the Premier League."

Six years ago, the then 17-year-old academy player could only watch on television as Newcastle slipped out of the Premier League after a final-day 1-0 defeat at Aston Villa, with even club talisman Alan Shearer in the role of temporary manager unable to halt a fatal slide.

Those memories remain painfully fresh for Dummett, and he has no intention of reliving them this weekend.

He said: "I remember watching it at home on TV, I remember the cameras on Steven Taylor - I think he was crying - and there was one an Alan Shearer and Iain Dowie, the assistant manager at the time, and you could see how gutted some of the players were on that pitch.

"Especially Steven, he would know exactly how it felt being a Newcastle fan. I'm exactly the same being a Newcastle fan, so I'm desperate for that not to happen again.

"I was absolutely gutted. It was six years ago, so it's hard to remember exactly what it was like, but I know I was gutted watching and I would hope that would never happen ever again for this club.

"I know now we are in a massive fight to make that not happen this weekend, and we need to get a positive result."

The Magpies head into the weekend two points better off than 18th-placed Hull and have to match whatever the Tigers do against Manchester United to stay up because of their inferior goal difference.

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