Sangare relishing Sunderland clash
Written by Luke Vinton
Midfielder Mo Sangare is hopeful Newcastle United Under-23s can come out on top when they face local rivals Sunderland on Monday night.
Neil Redfearn's side take on the Black Cats at Eppleton Colliery Welfare (kick-off 7pm BST), aiming for a much-needed victory in Premier League 2 as well as earning bragging rights over their North east neighbours.
United's second-string were involved in a classic comeback against Sunderland last term, recovering from two goals down to earn a thrilling 3-2 win on Wearside and Sangare is determined Newcastle can secure another important win in division two.
The midfielder told nufc.co.uk: "Everyone loves playing in a derby game so we'll want to go into the game and get stuck in and do what we can to hopefully beat them.
"Everytime we have played them, it has usually been a good game so I am looking forward to it as are all the rest of the lads.
"Last season, we came from two-nil down which wasn't easy knowing that you're the better side. We switched off by conceding two sloppy goals but that won't happen this time. We'll go from the get-go. We'll be out there to prove we are the better team.
"We'll handle it like a normal match but anything can happen in football so we'll be looking forward to it. Playing against Sunderland gives you that extra buzz. Going into a derby knowing this could be a great game gives you more motivation.
"Since I've been there, I've loved moments like that knowing you will be under pressure. That will prepare you for senior football.
"With Sunderland being a rival, it is quite a big game to make a statement. Hopefully, we can do the business and come back with an important win.
Newcastle, who sit in 10th place, could move within one point of the division two play-off spots with a win against Sunderland, who are winless after their opening seven league fixtures.
However, Newcastle's youngsters narrowly lost their last two league contests via stoppage time strikes and the Liberia international admits the manner of defeats have been difficult to take.
The 20-year-old aded: "The games we played against West Brom and Swansea, we felt we didn't deserve to lose but it's about taking chances. Knowing we'd given our all and then losing against teams we could have beaten was tough.
"It's all a learning curve for us and we'll move on from that. If we take our chances on Monday, we should able to win the game comfortably.
"Every game we play this season is not going to be easy - it's about how we approach it. We can't go there and just think we are the better team and will win.
"You can't have that mentality because you have to respect your opponents. If they put the work in and you don't, you will bear the consequences for that."
Admission is £3 for adults and £1 concessions.