Newcastle will look to get out of the relegation places when they host Brighton in a bottom-of-the-table clash at St. James Park in the Premier League on Saturday.
The Toons lost 3-1 to Liverpool at Anfield in the previous match-day and are enduring a tough start to the season. This comes off the back of a difficult summer with fan-favorite Rafa Benitez leaving and Steve Bruce taking over.
Newcastle won just one game so far, a surprise 1-0 win at Tottenham. After 5 games, they are in 18th place with 4 points and things need to change quickly if they want to avoid a relegation battle.
They were unlucky in the League Cup 2nd round, drawing another PL team in Leicester City, and got eliminated from the tournament on penalties. Thus, the mood is grim around St. James Park and a win would definitely help alleviate the atmosphere around the club.
Coming to their opponents, Brighton is also following a similar path this season. The Seagulls let go of Chris Hughton and replaced him with Graham Potter. They have won just once so far this season, a 3-0 away win against Watford in their first game.Embed from Getty Images
Since then, a couple of losses and a couple of draws followed and they find themselves in 16th place with 5 points from as many games. Thus, the Seagulls will definitely fight to get a result in this game, which promises to be an exciting contest.
In terms of team news, Florian Lejeune is a long-term absentee while Fabian Schar should be fit, after getting subbed off with a cramp in the previous game. Dwight Gayle’s recovery looks to have hit a roadblock while the game comes too soon for Andy Carroll and Allan Saint-Maximin.
Sean Longstaff is once again expected to miss out with an ankle injury while DeAndre Yedlin should be back in the match-day squad. Despite Matt Ritchie’s remarkable recovery, he will miss this one out.
Meanwhile, for Brighton, Potter will be without Jose Izquierdo with a long-term injury while Leandro Trossard is out until the next international break. Bernardo and Montoya are expected to be fit for the game while Ezequiel Schelotto and Leon Balogun should make the match-day squad.
Head-To-Head and Newcastle vs Brighton Prediction
The head-to-head between the sides is pretty even with Newcastle winning 9 to Brighton’s 10 while 5 ended in draws. In the PL, both sides have met just 4 times and the Toons are yet to register a win, losing twice and drawing the remaining two.Embed from Getty Images
The past 2 PL meetings at St.James Park have seen just one goal, with the visitors winning that game while drawing the other 0-0. Further, just 4 goals have been scored in those 4 games with the Seagulls registering a clean sheet in 3 of them.
However, considering the current form of the duo, a more open game can be expected with both teams sharing the spoils in the end.
Newcastle Predicted XI: Dubravka; Krafth, Schar, Lascelles, Dummett, Willems; Almiron, Hayden, Shelvey, Atsu; Joelinton
Brighton Predicted XI: Ryan; Duffy, Dunk, Webster; Montoya, Stephens, Propper, Bernardo; March, Gross, Maupay