By 90Min
September 28, 2018

Newcastle are still chasing a first Premier League victory of the season as they prepare to host Leicester at St. James' Park on Saturday.

The Magpies earned a creditable draw at Crystal Palace last week and now they must build on that by trying to get the win which will lift them out of the relegation zone.

Leicester's record so far this season is almost symmetrical with three wins, three defeats, 11 goals scored and ten conceded in their first six matches. Now is the time for Claude Puel's team to start stringing a run of results together.

Here's everything you need to know ahead of this meeting.


Classic Encounter

Stu Forster/GettyImages

Newcastle United 4-3 Leicester City (2 February 1997, Premiership)


A throwback to happier times for Newcastle, when they were Premier League title challengers and 4-3 was their favourite scoreline. It was less than a year since the Magpies had lost 4-3 at Anfield and just over a month until they would do so again, but on this occasion it was they who scored the odd goal in seven.

It looked like a routine win was on the cards when Rob Elliott's shot crept through Kasey Keller's hands in the first five minutes. But Leicester flipped the match on its head in the space of 13 second half minutes as Matt Elliott, Steve Claridge and Emile Heskey all took advantage of suspect defending.

Newcastle needed a hero - step forward the Premier League's greatest ever goalscorer. Alan Shearer blasted a free kick into the roof of Keller's net, found the bottom corner six minutes later, and then tapped in the winner from Rob Lee's pull back in the second minute of injury time to send the Gallowgate End into raptures.

How Newcastle could do with a striker of Shearer's ability these days.


Recent Form

Newcastle have lost four of their six matches so far this season, but those defeats came against tough opposition: Tottenham, Chelsea, Manchester City and Arsenal. Newcastle lost 2-1 to all of those opponents, staying competitive in every match but failing to take any points.

In their other two matches, Rafa Benitez's team drew 0-0 away to Cardiff and Crystal Palace, although the former felt like a defeat after Kenedy's late penalty miss. Newcastle seem organised defensively but it's clear where their main weakness lies.

Leicester fans started this season sceptical about whether Claude Puel was the man to take them forwards and after an equal number of victories and defeats they still aren't sure. Losses to Manchester United and Liverpool were to be expected but a 4-2 defeat at Bournemouth was cause for concern.

The Foxes got back on track by beating Huddersfield last weekend and they followed it up with a penalty shoot-out win over Wolves in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday.


Team News
Sam Bagnall - AMA/GettyImages

As if Newcastle's attacking options weren't thin enough, they have been dealt a blow as Salomon Rondon was ruled out for Saturday's match. The Venezuelan suffered a thigh injury and was taken off at half time in last weekend's draw at Selhurst Park.

Florian Lejeune is the only long-term absentee for the Magpies, who have a clean bill of health otherwise.

There was concern for Leicester when Demarai Gray was stretchered off in the latter stages at Molineux but Claude Puel told LCFC TV that the injury is not as serious as first feared. Gray will be sidelined for 3-6 weeks though.

Puel also said that summer signing Çağlar Söyüncü will be available for selection. The Turkish international is yet to feature for Leicester since signing from Freiburg last month.


Possible Starting Lineups

Newcastle (4-4-1-1): Dubravka; Dummett, Fernandez, Lascelles, Yedlin; Kenedy, Diame, Shelvey, Ritchie; Perez; Joselu


Leicester (4-2-3-1): Schmeichel; Chilwell, Evans, Maguire, Pereira; Ndidi, Mendy; Maddison, Iheanacho, Ghezzal; Vardy


Prediction
Chloe Knott - Danehouse/GettyImages

Despite their poor start to the season, Newcastle have looked defensively stout and are yet to concede against a side outside of the top six. They nullified Wilfried Zaha last week and if they can do the same to Jamie Vardy on Saturday they will stand a real chance.

But the Magpies will struggle for goals themselves, particularly with Rondon sidelined. Their last two goals have come from defenders, with Joselu the only other player to get on the score sheet in the league so far this season.

Don't expect a high-scoring match, but with the crowd behind Newcastle and with Leicester's defence having shown their vulnerabilities against Bournemouth, the Magpies could get lift-off at last.

Prediction: Newcastle United 1-0 Leicester City

You May Like

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)