Alan Pardew: “Don’t think that Alex Ferguson isn’t worried about our stadium more than our team, because he probably is.
“He knows our stadium can take the team up a level – that’s why we’ve had great results against Man United at home.
“On the back of a defeat in the Premier League, they know our fans will be buoyed by Thursday night. He’ll not be savouring the venue, trust me.
“Without being the manager, I knew about this fixture and how important it was to this city.
“Now I’m the manager, I’ve had a taste of it, and I know everything that it means to them.
“Therefore, the team has to put in a determined display. Our fans will accept defeat, but only if we go into the game in the right manner – ie trying to win it.
“That’s what we’ll try and do, trust me.
“They’re a team you can’t help but admire.
“They’ll have control of the game for periods. We need to be concentrated.
“But you can hurt them this year – they’re not as good defensively as they can be. There are opportunities for us.
“It’s definitely given everyone in the dressing room and training ground a boost.
“At times, it’s hard to put your finger on why we don’t click, then suddenly we click.
“The work we’ve put in, and everything we’ve done, is starting to bear fruit. You take that into the next game.
“All we can determine is the performance.
“If our performance is good enough as good as last year, we might get the same result.”