Without kicking a ball on Saturday, Christian Atsu’s Newcastle United have found themselves on the verge of promotion certainty, just under year after being relegated from the Premier League.
United are second in the English Championship – an automatic promotion spot – and will be guaranteed a place back in the top tier of English football with victory over Preston North End on Monday evening.
That match, at St James’s Park, is likely to be a noisy affair, with tens of thousands of expectant Toon fans wanting to ensure that their side receives loud and enthusiastic support.
United are in this position because their two closest promotion rivals, Huddersfield and Reading, both lost on Saturday afternoon.
It means that if Newcastle win on Monday, the other two sides cannot overtake them.
Qualification will also serve as a massive boost to Ghana international Christian Atsu who joined the club in the summer after yet again failing to convince new Chelsea boss Antonio Conte.