Alan Shearer admits Newcastle's crucial clash with Aston Villa is bigger than any cup final.
The 38-year-old will send his side out at Villa Park on Sunday knowing even victory may not be enough to keep them in the Barclays Premier League on what could be a dark day for his home-town club.
Shearer said: "It's bigger than a cup final, a hell of a lot bigger than a cup final."
"The question has been asked on four or five occasions over the last four or five games, 'Is this the biggest game of your career?', and I keep answering, 'Yes, because it's the next one'.
"But we know what's at stake, we know what's riding on it and I am pretty confident we can go there and give our great fans something to shout about, I really am."
A draw for Newcastle, coupled with defeat for Hull at home to Manchester United, would keep the Magpies in the top flight, and while Shearer is fully expecting more twists and turns, he is convinced they can survive.
He said: "I am totally convinced we will get out of it, yes, and I think more importantly, so are my players.
"I asked them to forget last weekend's result, whether we thought we played well or whether we thought we played badly or had good decisions, bad decisions.
"That's gone, we can't change that. What we can change is this weekend and I believe if we go there and win, it will be a very very good day for us."
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