Newcastle 'on an upward trajectory' - Ashworth

Dan Ashworth with Steve Harper and Eddie Howe
Dan Ashworth with Steve Harper and Eddie Howe

Newcastle's sporting director Dan Ashworth says the club aim to "compete for trophies" as he looks ahead to aspirations for the coming years.

The Magpies continued to show their strength in the Premier League by handing Arsenal their first league defeat of the season on Saturday, and beat Manchester United last week to secure a spot in the Carabao Cup quarter-finals.

This season also marked their return to the Champions League, where they face Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday night sitting third in Group F.

"The next number of years is to fight and get into the top six on a regular basis and compete for trophies," Ashworth said. "We are on an upward trajectory, but there are definitely some bumps in the road and that is the nature of football - but we are on the right pathway.

"What's really difficult is to be able to compete commercially as well. Some of those clubs have been a global brand for decades. That's one of the big challenges for Peter (Silverstone), Darren (Eales) and the team as well.

"We've all got to try and work together to try and get ourselves into a situation where not only are we a top-six club on the pitch, but also a top-six club off the pitch. To really try and drive the revenues and interest in the club as well, which gives us more ammunition in order to be able to compete on the pitch."

Despite a dramatic turnaround in fortunes at St James' Park since his arrival in June 2022, Ashworth refuses to take any success for granted.

"Complacency is a dangerous thing isn't it?," he added. "Certainly there's no complacency here. We want to keep striving and keep pushing.

"If you start to stand still in professional sport, you're stuffed. It's about keeping on pushing and driving in all areas of the football club."

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