Eddie Howe spoke to the press this morning ahead of Newcastle United’s trip to the Etihad to face Premier League champions Manchester City.

Last week Eddie Howe watched on as his big summer signing Sandro Tonali netted his side’s opening goal after just six minutes before going on to have one of the most impressive Newcastle United debuts in recent memory.

Despite having to endure a night in Wetherspoons this week, Tonali appears to be loving life on Tyneside which flies in the face of all the negativity surrounding his move on social media. Bitter AC Milan fans and fans of rival Premier League clubs tried to suggest he wasn’t happy with the move to the North East of England.

Tonali showed his true emotions when he scored on Saturday

Seeing Tonali’s reaction when scoring his first goal for the club should finally have put all those rumours to bed as he raced towards the corner to celebrate with supporters and his new team mates.

It was something that clearly delighted Eddie Howe who remarked in his media briefing this morning (via The Chronicle): “You could see when he scored the emotion coming out. A big move. A great start. Then the rest of his performance followed that goal, really, where he was excellent.

Newcastle United v Aston Villa - Premier League
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“Now he will hopefully feel the love of the supporters. There will be an instant connection between him and them, and that can only help.”

Newcastle need to end a 23 year streak on Saturday

The Newcastle fans have certainly taken to Tonali in the same way they did to Bruno Guimaraes and if the Italian can embrace that love as well as Bruno has it’s going to be a beautiful Tyneside love affair.

Newcastle United v Aston Villa - Premier League
Photo by George Wood/Getty Images

Saturday night is going to be a huge test for Tonali as he will line up against the best team in Europe, if not the World, so this will be the true test of how quickly he has adapted to the change in pace from Serie A to the Premier League.

Newcastle haven’t won at the Etihad since Manchester City moved in only picking up two points at that ground in 23 years, but if ever there was a time to break that streak, it’s now. Newcastle look stronger than I’ve ever seen them and I believe we have what it takes to turn City over on Saturday.

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