Man United cup glory may affect Newcastle United's Europe hopes with 'embarrassing' question asked

Newcastle United's European plans for next season could be affected by Manchester United after the Premier League season comes to an end.

Newcastle remain firmly in the hunt for either the Europa League or Europa Conference League and currently sit above the Red Devils on goal difference in the Premier League. However, Erik ten Hag's side stumbled over the line in the FA Cup semi-final on Sunday and victory in next month's showpiece could spell trouble for the Magpies.

As it stands, Newcastle sit sixth in the table, which at present would be enough to book a Europa League spot. However, should Manchester United win the FA Cup, they would snatch the place from Eddie Howe's side, even if they finished seventh or below in the Premier League.

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A Manchester City win in next month's final would mean sixth-place guarantees a Europa League spot. Europa Conference League qualification looks all but certain for the team who finishes seventh.

Aston Villa will earn a Europa League spot should they win the Europa Conference League this season. However, this won't matter much given Unai Emery's side look destined to qualify for that competition at the very least due to their league standing.

As for Newcastle, Howe simply wants his side to avoid outside noise and permutations to instead focus on winning each of their last six fixtures, starting with Crystal Palace on Wednesday. Much has been made of whether securing a European spot, given the vast injuries in recent months, would be a bigger and better achievement than the highs of last season - but once again Howe has refused to be drawn into such a debate.

Newcastle have turned their form around but Europe-chasing rivals Manchester United are struggling at the worst possible time. Sunday's FA Cup semi-final ended with a victory but Ten Hag's men threw away a three-goal lead against Championship side Coventry City and needed a penalty shootout to secure the win.

Asked if the result was an 'embarrassment', Ten Hag replied: "That would be crazy. You need tools to manage this. With all the injuries, we don't have many tools. We don't even have a back four in their best positions.

"At the end of the day, it is an achievement to reach the final two years in a row. I see the mistakes we make but it is not an embarrassment."