Aston Villa will show relegation-threatened Newcastle United no mercy when they bid to secure fifth spot in the Premier League in the final match of the season on Sunday. Although Villa are guaranteed a place in the new Europa League next season, goalkeeper Brad Friedel told Talksport radio that Newcastle should not expect an easy time at Villa Park. Newcastle realistically need a win on Sunday to save themselves from the drop, but a draw at Villa would suffice if Hull City lost to Manchester United. "Our form has been a bit disappointing recently - but we are still fighting for a fifth place finish and that might not bode well for Newcastle as we definitely have something to play for," Friedel said. "I know we've already qualified for the new Europa League, but we are professionals and we do want to do the best we can." Villa are sixth, one point behind FA Cup finalists Everton who are at Fulham on Sunday. "It's not a nice time for Newcastle, Middlesbrough, Sunderland and Hull," Friedel said. "I was involved in one or two relegation battles in my time at Blackburn. I know Newcastle have a lot of very talented players, especially going forward. But when you get to games like this sometimes you tighten up and you're not able to show your stuff." Friedel's remarks came as the debate continues about the impact Manchester United will have on the relegation battle. United, who retained the title last weekend, face Hull just three days before playing Barcelona in the Champions League final in Rome and manager Alex Ferguson is likely to rest several senior players. A win for Hull would keep them up, no matter what result Newcastle get at Villa Park.
21 May 2009
Get FourFourTwo interviews, features and fun in your inbox every week. For free!
Thank you for registering for our Newsletter
We will send regular updates on the ongoing FourFourTwo updates to the email address you have supplied.