Sunday 8 October 2023

Match preview: Here come the Toon

This afternoon sees a buoyant Newcastle United side visit the Olympic Stadium to do battle with David Moyes' men. The game is particularly signifiant as both sides fancy a top-six finish and come the run in the division of points in this clash will be an important decider of places in the top half of the league.

Newcastle have looked swashbuckling at times, including an eight goal demolition of the tragic Blades, but with losses to Man city, Liverpool and Brighton, rest just below the Hammers. 

Newcastle have traditionally been poor away from home, but the counterattacking capacity of their current squad has changed all of that. Boosted by Saudi cash, Eddie Howe has invested wisely and on their day his side can be ruthlessly effective. Their 4-1 thumping of PSG in midweek serving due warning to Moyes as to how formidable they can be if you go toe to toe with them.

But Moyes rarely gets dragged into a slugfest and one expects will try to frustrate the Toon and look to catch them on the break or at the marvellous James Ward-Prowse's set pieces. 

The Hammers have enough squad depth to have rested Zouma and Antonio in the midweek win away to Freiberg, but their were long shifts for Bowen, Paqueta and Ward-Prowse.

Newcastle have significant injury problems just now with Barnes, Willock and Botman ruled out, while Joelinton and Hammers bogeyman Callum Wilson doubts. Anthony Gordon is suspended.

Kick off is 2pm. Rory Nostradamus s calling a 2-2 draw.



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