Newcastle United boss Alan Pardew welcomes Benfica tie

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Europa 'welcome relief' after league form

Alan Pardew says Newcastle's Europa League quarter-final tie at Benfica, provides "welcome relief" from a "sticky" Premier League season.

Newcastle are three points above the bottom three in the top flight, having lost four of their last six league games, including Saturday's 4-0 defeat by Manchester City.

But Pardew says Thursday's clash with the Portuguese league leaders will be a game the "brilliant" Newcastle fans will enjoy.

Uefa Europa League quarter-finals

Estadio da Luz, Lisbon
Thursday 4 April
2005 BST
Live commentary on BBC Radio 5 live and live text commentary on the BBC Sport website