Football

Newcastle star wants Championship title

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Goalkeeper Steve Harper is determined to pick up a Coca-Cola Championship winner's medal after helping Newcastle to return to the Barclays Premier League.

Harper's 20 clean sheets to date this season have provided a firm foundation for the club's promotion drive, which reached its destination on Monday evening. However, Harper and his team-mates will not celebrate fully until they have pipped rivals West Brom to the title and completed the season in style, starting with Blackpool's visit to St James' Park on Saturday.

The 35-year-old said: "We have got to see it through now. We need six or seven points, so that's the next aim, starting on Saturday."

He added: "To bounce back at the first opportunity is a big achievement, to be promoted with six games left is fantastic and testament to a lot of hard work from the manager, his staff, everybody behind the scenes and the players in that dressing room.

"There will be some celebrating for a couple of days before we get our minds back on the job.

"We have achieved our first aim, now we have got to achieve the next one, which is to go on and win the league."

Harper has experienced all the highs and lows of Newcastle's turbulent recent history during almost 17 years at St James', and despite having played in an FA Cup final and sampled Champions League football, he is delighted to have secured a promotion that was far from a foregone conclusion.

He said: "It's obviously a great personal high to get promoted. It's what we set out to achieve at the start of the year, so it's fantastic to have done it."

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Topics:
Football
Championship
Steve Harper
Newcastle United

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