LONDON: Newcastle United will not wear cup final suits on Sunday, according to Geordie player Dan Burn, because they are going to the English capital to win, not just for a “day out.”
The Magpies have binned the Carabao Cup tradition of turning out in their Sunday best, instead opting to wear tracksuits in the build-up to the showpiece final against Manchester United.
The decision was taken by the players in a pre-Wembley meeting at the club’s Benton training ground this week.
Left-back Burn, a lifelong Newcastle United fan, said: “No, we’ve opted against the suits. I don’t really like wearing a suit anyway.
“It’s something we spoke about. We’ve got a leadership group and just said we didn’t want to make it where we’re going for a day out. We’re going to win and to have as little distractions as possible.”
Along with Sean Longstaff, Burn is the only Tyneside connection in the side, and wants to ensure the rest of the squad know just how much the game means to Geordies.
“That should be the mentality to everyone. I’ve heard people say it’s good to get to the final but I don’t agree. It is good to get here but for a club the size of Newcastle and how long we’ve gone without winning, I think we need to win and we should have that mentality that we’re going there to win,” Burn added.
Eddie Howe’s team go into the game as rank underdogs, but in terms of support, Newcastle have some of their own on the park.
On what Geordie influence meant to the team, Burn said: “Huge. I think it’s good to have that link. Even for local kids. When I was a kid coming to watch it was Champions League. I was seeing Alan Shearer, Steve Harper, and other players who were trying to inspire the next generation. If we can have that influence on other local lads in the area, that can only be a good thing.”
More than 40,000 Geordies are heading to London for the encounter, with around 30,000 expected to be inside the ground.
For many it will be an emotional weekend, with Newcastle not having reached a major cup final since 1999.
Burn noted that it was a case of keeping cool heads rather than letting the occasion get the better of them.
“That’s what we’ve spoken about, those 1 percents, but I’m not going to say that’s going to make a difference between winning and losing the final. We could wear suits and win or lose.
“But mentally those 1 percents add up and I personally think it’s more a mentality thing. I know everyone is excited, the city is, that we’ve made the final. I’m not happy with just being in the final and I don’t think the city should be either. We’re getting to the final to win. It’s a long time since this club has won anything and we want to be the team to change that.
“I’m trying not to think about it too much. I’ll be emotional knowing I’m walking out in a League Cup final for a club I grew up loving as a kid. But I think you know as you get older it’s just another game and it’s 90 minutes against Man United. Over 90 minutes, anything can happen.”