“Victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road may be; for without victory, there is no survival.“
Words spoken by the late Sir Winston Churchill, but ones that capture the emotion perfectly for our task at hand tomorrow afternoon at Turf Moor.
Make no bones about it – this is a game we MUST go out to win.
Adama Traore’s dramatic last gasp strike for Wolves against Fulham has handed us a golden opportunity to put some distance between ourselves and the bottom three, with victory on Sunday allowing us to move SIX clear of Scott Parker’s side having played a game less.
This Burnley game is so crucial to our hopes because of the terrifying run of fixtures that come after it.
Toon fans could be forgiven for expecting zero points from West Ham, Liverpool, Arsenal, Leicester and Man City as we are watching a side that have currently won just twice in their last 21 games.
Steve Bruce blew the last golden opportunity he had when the fixture list was looking slightly more optimistic.
The end of February to the middle of March saw us play Wolves (h), West Brom (a), Aston Villa (h) and Brighton (a).
Instead of having the foresight to pick up points during this vital period, Bruce set our stall out to try and avoid defeat, a move that pathetically backfired as we managed just three draws and a disastrous 3-0 battering by Brighton.
Against Burnley, there is no hiding place for us to go. We have to come out fighting, build on last weekend’s late equaliser and, most importantly, go for all three points; not set up to avoid defeat.
The performance against Spurs was a massive improvement to the dire defeat at Brighton a fortnight earlier. If we come out in the same manner tomorrow, you would like to think we have enough to put Burnley to the sword.
Throw in the added quality of Callum Wilson and Allan Saint-Maximin, two players who played out of their skin in the reverse fixture back in October, and it almost begins to look straightforward.
Let’s go out there and take a monumental step towards safety with a much needed win.