Newcastle's Darlow claims teams will treat fixtures at St James' as their cup final

Karl Darlow has claimed Newcastle will be considered a major scalp in the Championship.

Newcastle's Karl DarlowNewcastle's Karl Darlow has explained how tough it will be next season in the Championship

Newcastle United goalkeeper Karl Darlow has warned his side how tough it will be to bounce back to the Premier League at the first attempt, as reported by the Chronicle.

The 25-year-old explained how every club that visits St James' Park will treat it as their 'cup final', when speaking to The Chronicle:

“Clubs will come to St James’ Park and see it as their cup final. We need be aware of that."

Newcastle manager Rafael BenitezCan Rafael Benitez take Newcastle back to the Premier League at the first time of asking?

Newcastle's disastrous 2015/16 campaign ended in relegation, but there is renewed optimism in the North East following the confirmation of Rafa Benitez signing a long-term deal with the Magpies. Many of the Toon Army believe they are now in a stronger position to rebuild for their future, albeit in a division lower than their reputation merits.

Darlow knows exactly how tough the Championship is after a loan spell at Nottingham forest, and he highlighted the games against the men from the City Ground as stand-out fixtures:

“It’s football - you are always going to back to clubs you have been at before. We will just see what happens when I go there. I will be excited to play against them and hopefully we can do well against them.”

Newcastle's Karl Darlow celebrates at the end of the matchCarlow will face competition for his place when the injured Tim Krul returns to action

Darlow will have his work cut out if he is to keep his place as Newcastle's number one next season, what with the expected return from injury of Tim Krul.

With Rafa at the helm, Newcastle have every chance of reaching the promised land once again, but firstly, they must heed Darlow's advice, and be prepared for a tough battle, with teams raising the level of their game every time they play the Geordies.

Newcastle fans behind manager Rafael BenitezRafa has the full backing of the Toon Army

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