Newcastle manager John Carver admits he has "the hardest job in football" as he looks to cement the Magpies' Premier League status.
Carver's side have lost their last five league matches on the spin and managed to win just two out of 13 since Alan Pardew left for Crystal Palace in December 2014.
Quoted in Goal, the Newcastle boss said:
I think it is the hardest job in football. Definitely. It is. I don't manufacture anything – I don't do that. Straight and honest, that's me.
It's the dream job, right. This is the dream job, but the hardest thing is taking the criticism off your own people.
That's the bit I find really, really difficult. And some of it is deserved and some of it is not. Sometimes you're dealt the hand and you've got to get on with it, and this is the hand I've been dealt.
Spurs head coach Mauricio Pochettino is unsure whether a planned boycott by Newcastle fans will prove a help or hindrance to his side this weekend.
This season, like so many in recent years, has been a frustrating one at St James' Park and that has led some fans to take action when Spurs arrive on Sunday.
A number of supporters plan to boycott the televised game in protest against owner Mike Ashley, which is likely to lead to a peculiar atmosphere in the north east.
It will certainly make it an interesting test for Pochettino's side as they look to recover from some disappointing recent results of their own.
You never know because sometimes the effect on the players and team maybe is positive. Maybe sometimes the players are scared and run more than all season.
Or maybe it is a very negative atmosphere and they feel under pressure and don't show their face. You never know in football how it can affect all the decisions around the team. For that it is difficult to guess what will happen on Sunday.
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Newcastle midfielder Rolando Aarons may have played his last game this season after suffering another injury setback.
The 19-year-old, who is out of contract in the summer, was in contention to play for the club's under-21s against Derby on Wednesday evening along with fellow long-term absentee Siem de Jong.
However, Press Association Sport understands he has succumbed to injury once again and it is feared his campaign could be over.
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Newcastle head coach John Carver has admitted Sunday's derby defeat to Sunderland was one of the "darkest days" of his career.
The 50-year-old could only look on helplessly at the Stadium of Light as the Magpies' arch-rivals triumphed for a record fifth successive time in the fixture which matters more than most at the weekend, and the backlash since has been concerted and furious.
It's been extremely difficult. Certainly Monday was one of the darkest days in my career, and I'm still hurting, to be honest.
The one thing I have to do is not to show it in front of the players, but it was a bitter pill to take. It was the manner of the defeat.
Newcastle defender Daryl Janmaat says his side got what they deserved in their 1-0 loss to Sunderland.
The Dutchman, who was forced to play at centre-back, believes his team was below par for the local derby.
It was not good enough. The first half was really poor, we were too negative, so it was not good enough. The second half was much better, but it still wasn't good enough.
I wouldn't say we didn't give everything. What I can say is we were not good enough and everybody saw that Sunderland were better, especially in the first half.
If you are not good enough, then most of the time, you lose.
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