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Dan Burn has insisted Newcastle are in no mood to stop now after dragging themselves out of Premier League relegation trouble and to within touching distance of the top 10.
The Magpies climbed 15 points clear of the drop zone as a result of Wednesday night’s 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace at St James’ Park, their sixth on the trot on Tyneside, something they had not achieved in the top flight since 2004 during Sir Bobby Robson’s reign.
It left them in 11th place, level on 40 points with Brighton in 10th with five games to go, but with safety not yet mathematically assured and top two Manchester City and Liverpool among their remaining opponents, they want to keep the ball rolling.
Defender Burn said: “Well 40 is the magic number, but until it’s done, we will just keep going. We don’t want to stop here, we want to go as high as we can.
“I think it’s some achievement from where we were when the ownership came in to where we are now.”
Burn was still wearing the colours of Brighton when Newcastle’s new owners completed their takeover in October last year, and the club he was to join in January were five points adrift of safety when they appointed Eddie Howe as head coach during the following month.
Chairman Yasir Al-Rumayyan was at St James’ on Wednesday for the first time since January 8, when he saw the Magpies lose 1-0 to League One Cambridge in the FA Cup as the turn-around they craved proved elusive.
But during the intervening period, they have won nine of the 14 league games they have played and lost just three.
Their latest success came courtesy of Miguel Almiron’s fine 32nd-minute strike and a concerted second-half rearguard action which kept Palace at bay and sparked wild celebrations on the final whistle, reminding boyhood fan Burn of the days when he watched the club in Champions League action against the likes of Juventus and Bayer Leverkusen.
He said: “I love playing at home. It feels like what it used to be like when I was a kid.”
If the official line is that there is work still to be done, it seems only a matter of time until Newcastle can turn their attention to their summer recruitment mission.
Palace boss Patrick Vieira too is refusing to look too far ahead as he challenges his players to prove they have a continued part to play in his brave new world.
Vieira said: “You always want to improve individually and collectively. We want to be a better team, but we don’t want to take any kind of conclusion yet.
“There are still six games to play, six really important games for us. Of course when we take this conclusion, we will see how players conduct themselves and how much they want to compete every week, how far they want to challenge themselves and to keep giving everything to the team and to the football club.”