Alan Pardew has challenged Newcastle to secure a top-10 Premier League finish after their Europa League dreams were dashed by Benfica.
The Magpies led the Portuguese Primeira Liga leaders 1-0 heading into stoppage time at St James' Park, however as they surged forward Eduardo Salvio provided the sucker punch in the 92nd minute to send Los Encarnados through 4-2 on aggregate.
Pardew's men have little time to dust themselves down ahead of Sunday's derby clash with arch-rivals Sunderland, but he remains hopeful that victory in the Tyne-Wear derby can provide the platform for his team to ease themselves into the top half of the table by the end of a trying campaign.
Papiss Cissé rues a missed opportunity on the St James's Park turf
"Our next target after going out tonight is to try to secure a top-10 finish if we can," Pardew stressed.
"With all the injuries we have had and the credible performance we have put in in Europe, I would have to take that as a real learning curve for us in terms of the injuries we have sustained.
"The next time we go into Europe, we need to be better prepared than we were at the start of this season.
"You have to put into context what we are. The financial restrictions we have are so much greater than the top clubs in this country.
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