Although Newcastle’s long-awaited search for a major domestic or European trophy has been getting ever longer since securing the 1955 FA Cup, that does not quite tell the whole story as in 2006 something remarkable happened.
Newcastle won something: The Intertoto Cup.
Now no longer ‘a thing,’ the tournament was a glorified pre-season tournament that actually had something worthwhile at the end of it, qualification to the upcoming seasons UEFA Cup (Europa League as it is now known).
After finishing the 2005/06 Premier League season in 7th, it meant the Magpies qualified to enter the Intertoto Cup at the third round which helped ease passage into the UEFA Cup proper.
With a new summer away trip planned, the concern for many fans was how were they going to watch their team whilst playing abroad and where would they have to go?
Fortunately, the tournament was split into regions and Newcastle entered into the Northern region and as they only came into the tournament in the third-round stage, it meant they only had to beat Norwegian side Lillestrøm to be entered into the UEFA Cup qualifying stage.
This they did despite a scare in the home tie, former West Brom and Hull City star Robert Koren put the Norwegian’s into the lead in the 21st minute before Luque smashed in the equaliser in the 50th minute to level the tie.
Over at Lillestrøm’s Åråsen Stadion, the Magpies came to life under Glenn Roeder thanks to a brace from Ameobi and a 90th minute strike by Emre to give Newcastle a 4-1 aggregate win.
Because the Intertoto Cup was a complicated beast, it meant that Newcastle, alongside ten other teams progressed to the qualifying stages and eight sides including Newcastle progressed to the first-round proper after beating Latvian side FK Ventspils 1-0 over two legs.
So, how did Newcastle actually win the Intertoto Cup?
The winner of the Intertoto Cup was determined by who went furthest in the main tournament of the UEFA Cup from those who earned qualification via the Intertoto route.
Although, Newcastle were drawn in arguably the hardest group of all with Fenerbahce, Celta Vigo, Eintracht Frankfurt and Palermo to contend with.
However, the Magpies topped the group with ten points from their four games and looked good to go a long way.
Newcastle were the last side standing from the Intertoto Cup qualifiers and made it all the way to the last sixteen round where they faced Dutch side AZ Alkmaar.
Prior to kick off, club captain Scott Parker lifted the Intertoto Cup in front of the Newcastle supporters to mixed acclaim, but it was AZ who made it through to the last eight thanks to the away goals rule scoring twice at St James Park in a staggering 4-4 over two legs.
Sevilla went on to claim the title that season beating fellow La Liga outfit Espanyol 3-1 on penalties, but it will be remembered in the North East as the last time the Magpies got their hands on a proper piece of silverware (sort of).