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Team Preview - Newcastle United [Premier League 2019-20 - 8/20]

Newcastle United

by AjaxTreesdown

Welcome to the triumphant return of the Premier League Previews, a series where a fan gives an overview of his team for your perusal, and I get an excuse to take pot-shots at other clubs. This will run until the eve of the Premier League, taking a look at each club in turn. Today from way down south we're going way up north, with Newcastle United.

About

Last season

Pos P W D L GF GA GD Points
13th 38 12 9 17 42 48 -6 45
Pre-season began 12 months ago with a lot of Newcastle fans filled with hope after a 10th placed finish. Mikel Merino and Aleksandar Mitrovic were sold to Real Sociedad and Fulham respectively, with their replacements being Ki Sung-Yeung on a free and Salomon Rondon on loan. Chancel Mbemba was also sold to Porto, while Fabian Schär and Federico Fernandez came in at centre back. Martin Dubravka and Kenedy returned to the club after impressive loan spells, with Dubravka signing permanently. Yoshinori Muto was also signed from Mainz as the most expensive purchase for us at £9.5m.
An awful start to the season saw us fail to win in our first 10 league games. In fairness, we did play 5 of the eventual top 6 in this time, but it was still a shocking run. Despite decent performances against Tottenham, Chelsea and Manchester City, we completely bottled games against Cardiff, Leicester and Manchester United, throwing away a 2-0 half time lead at Old Trafford. A scrappy game vs Watford in early November was our first win of the season. We beat Bournemouth and Burnley in our following two games, instilling hope into the fans that maybe we weren't terrible after all. We then won 1 game in our next 9. ¯\(ツ)
22 games into the season, we sat in 18th place on 18 points. we were 3 points away from Brighton in 15th and 7 points clear of Huddersfield at the foot of the table. Gameweek 23 saw us hosting Cardiff at home. We won 3-0 with a strong performance in a game that could have been the biggest result of our season, but 10 days later Manchester City came to St James' Park and we made headlines around the world by winning 2-1, in one of the biggest shocks of the season. Our midfield that game was Isaac Hayden and Sean Longstaff, who was thrust into the limelight after being praised by Pep Guardiola. The fans' mood was at an insane high, boosted again 2 days later when Miguel Almiron's arrival finally broke the club's record transfer fee.
The back to back victories and Almiron's arrival revitalised the team, narrowly losing to Tottenham, drawing with Wolves and beating fellow relegation candidates Huddersfield and Burnley quite convincingly. A 2-0 defeat away to West Ham dented the team's form (we only picked up 4 points from the next 4 games) and saw Sean Longstaff ruled out for the remaining 9 games of the season with a severe knee injury.
The following game saw us do what Manchester United had done to us 5 months prior. Everton led 2-0 at St James' Park at half time, but a Salomon Rondon and Ayoze Perez masterclass saw the game finish 3-2. This signalled the beginning of an unplayable run of form for Perez, scoring 8 goals in 9 games including a hat trick against Southampton in what might be the best performance I've ever seen from a Newcastle player. The final 3 games of the season saw us draw to Brighton, lose to Liverpool in the dying moments thanks to Origi being the biggest clutch player alive and a comprehensive 4-0 victory against Fulham. A 13th placed finish was far better than we hoped for after the winless streak at the beginning of the season. At the time we were overjoyed, but everything that has happened with the club since has made the positives from last season somewhat bittersweet.

This Season

At the time of writing, Summer has been nothing short of disastrous so far. The season ended with some optimism that Rafa Benitez was going to sign a contract extension, we would sign Salomon Rondon permanently and that a wealthy group from the Middle East were interested in buying the club and finally ending Mike Ashley's reign as the owner of the club. Rafa left has left and signed for Chinese second division Dalian Yifang, with Rondon joining him. The takeover seems to be dead in the water, with Steve Bruce being appointed as manager on a 3 year contract. As of yet, there have been no players signed to the senior team, while Ayoze Perez and Joselu have been sold. We're expecting Joelinton to be announced in the next few days for what will be another record breaking fee, but I'm not optimistic that he will be good enough to drag us up the table.
The most I can currently hope for this season is a relegation battle that sees us narrowly stay up. Right now, I'm not sure I'll even care by the time we get past January. A sad reality that a good number of Newcastle fans are facing.
Transfers
Highlights
Player Type From To Fee(£m)
Ayoze Perez Permanent Newcastle United Leicester City 30
Joelinton Permanent Hoffenheim Newcastle United 40
Jose Salomon Rondon End of Loan Newcastle United West Bromwich Albion N/A
All incoming/outgoing transfers Full 2019-20 squad
3 players to watch out for
Sean Longstaff
Longstaff's recovery from injury is something I worry about a lot. Rolando Aarons' progress at Newcastle was similar; a handful of promising appearances ended by severe knee injuries. We have slapped a £50m price tag on him to ward off Manchester United this summer, which I hope we don't end up looking foolish for. Longstaff's tireless work rate, tidy passing and his threat from range (he scored numerous screamers when at Blackpool 2 years ago) will be instrumental if he returns as strong as he was last season.
Florian Lejeune
While Fabian Schär and Jamaal Lascelles have been the centre backs to receive the plaudits in the last 2 seasons, Florian Lejeune has gone somewhat under the radar when he has been equal to, and sometimes even better, than the pair of them. His involvement in the squad has at times been restricted by the two anterior cruciate ligament tears he has suffered, despite him returning from both of them in half the time footballers usually take to recover. Lejeune's positional awareness and composure on the ball made him a consistently effective defensive partner to Lascelles and Schär, while his passing accuracy and range on the left side of a back 3 was a great asset to the attacking movements under Rafa Benitez. With Steve Bruce likely opting for a very direct approach this season, Lejeune's distribution will be very important.
Jonjo Shelvey
I wanted to say Miguel Almiron, as the only player remaining from the Perez-Rondon-Almiron front 3 that was so promising last season, but I think Jonjo Shelvey could be very pivotal player. A number of Rafa's outcasts from last season like Dwight Gayle, Rolando Aarons and Jack Colback will return to the fray much to the dismay of many fans. It's Shelvey however, that catches my eye. Shelvey has talent that few players in the Premier League possess, a pinpoint accuracy with diagonal long passing that is a dream to any wide player capable of exploiting space. The downside to him is just about everything else. His poor work rate and lacking athleticism means he often can't provide adequate cover to the defence and his temper (albeit improved in recent times) means he is always a potential red card. He's a player to watch for better or worse. His performances could result in us gaining 10 points this season, or losing that many.
What the fans think
Thanks to /NUFC for their help.
How do you think this season will go?
Not as well as any of us want it to, but also not as bad as many think it will go. So (optimistically) somewhere between 11-16.
I think we'll finish 13th if (and it's a big if) we make another couple of decent signings. I loved Rafa, but he would often freeze players out of the team for unknown reasons, and I think some of those coming back will have something to prove. My call for player of the season is Shelvey for that reason, I think he'll be called back in and his long Hollywood passes will work well with Almiron and another fast winger (ASM?).
We will all get increasingly annoyed as historically 'smaller' clubs than us like Wolves, Bournemouth, Watford and Leicester take an easy three points from us home and away. Their owners have actual ambition for their clubs and have proper facilities and coaching. We've got Steve Bruce in command and some wheelie bins for ice baths. The big 6 teams will beat us despite our plucky performances, we will play out grinding draws or fluky 1-0 wins against other relegation fodder teams like Brighton and Sheffield United. Meanwhile beloved ex-players like Shola Ameobi will get airtime on Sky Sports to tell everyone how great Mike Ashley is. If we don't get relegated then it will be a miracle, some fans hope that we do go down because they believe Fat Mike might be more likely to sell if we are in the Championship/League One.
Which player is going to be your star of the season and why?
Lejeuene. He's arguably our best player but his time with us has been marred with injuries. However, when he has played he has given us that boost we needed out from defence. He's a ball playing centre-back who also has great defensive capabilities. A trio of him, Schar and Lascelles will be key for us this coming season.
If Almiron can carry his form over despite losing the two players he linked up so well with it'll be him. If Joelinton can find his feet and score the goals to keep us up then him.
Isaac Hayden. He was quality at the back end of last season, and his personal problems appear to have subsided/been resolved to an extent. Hopefully, this means he will push on and make a case for a potential national team call up.
How do you think the team will line up?
GK Dubravka
Back 5: Manquillo, Schar, Lascelles, Dummett, Ritchie
MF: Longstaff, Hayden, Shelvey
ST: Joelinton, Almiron
Formation.
Dubravka. A back 5 of Manquillo Schär Lascelles Dummett and Ritchie. Longstaff and Hayden CMs, Almiron Joelinton Muto the forwards.

Wrap Up

by NickTM

The Manager: Well, beloved manager Rafa Benitez finally decided that enough was enough after his contract expired in the summer and went off to enjoy being filthy fucking rich in China, smuggling his boy Salomon Rondon through customs along with him. Equally beloved owner Mike Ashley decided that the logical choice to replace this Champions League-winning, multiple time La Liga-winning, two-time UEFA Manager of the Year was with... Steve Bruce. Oh boy. Look, as much as I like to use this section to poke some fun, I'm still a Palace fan, and thus I can't quite bring myself to align myself anywhere other than in line with your average Newcastle fan's reaction towards him. It was a pathetic appointment. Bruce, fresh off jumping ship from Sheffield Wednesday as soon as he saw an opportunity in the Premier League - managing to land Newcastle in hot water legally whilst he was at it, true to form - arrives with a mediocre track record in the Premier League and a spell managing bitter rivals Sunderland for one and a half incredibly average seasons. Baffling.
The Team: Benitez managed to cut out quite a lot of the deadwood and refresh the squad significantly during his tenure, which left Newcastle with a team that was reasonably balanced and able to compete across the pitch. Unfortunately, his departure was followed in quick succession by the aforementioned Salomon Rondon's loan finishing and also Ayoze Perez, a flaky but talented forward, departing to Leicester City for a hefty £30m sum. In order to compensate for the shortfall up front, a huge £40m was shelled out for Hoffenheim's Joelinton, who arrives with an okay-but-not-really-that-good goal record spread across two years out on loan at Rapid Wien and one at his former parent club. Much will be expected of him between donning the coveted number 9 shirt and the so-far limited effectiveness of last year's signing Yoshinori Muto. Elsewhere, the defence will look to continue the form that saw it become the most effective unit in the bottom half, and much has been made of the admittedly limited gametime Sean Longstaff has had in the Prem so far. Ultimately, it looks like Newcastle will be relying heavily on Joelinton to hit the ground running and Miguel Almiron to really show his class tucked in behind him.
Why to like them: I quite like DeAndre Yedlin as one of the United States' attempts to plonk a superlative athlete on a football pitch in hope he'll become a superstar. Miguel Almiron's a treat to watch play, and if the team loses there's always the faint hope one of their fans will go full Little Mac on an ungulate.
Why to dislike them: Half their identity is based on beating a League One team that they haven’t beat in 8 years. Their fans claim to hate Mike Ashley - which, let's be honest, they get a little hysterical about given they make him out to be absolute footballing Lucifer when there's probably half a dozen owners in English football alone that you'd choose him over - and yet have had about one sort-of-effective protest in the entire time he's been an owner. They're still so mentally broken by a bedsheet some bloke had scribbled a half-baked pun on that there's genuine animosity towards Aston Villa to this day. Couple that with all the proclaimations of being a 'big club' despite not really ever having achieved that much comparatively and you can see why so many fans in England often end up a little irked by them.
Also, Steve Bruce can fuck off, the pudgy northern mercenary wrister.
Summary: Newcastle weren't really good last year, and you feel the strength of Benitez' management was the thing really holding them together. With Rafa gone and an already significant outlay spent on a single transfer, things look even more grim this season. You wouldn't bet on Steve Bruce to maintain their integrity defensively, their forwards have been weakened at very least in depth, and whilst the midfield is solid it's not entirely inspiring. If you can find good odds on a midseason managerial sacking, I'd be tempted.

Links

Aston Villa | Sheffield United | Norwich City | Brighton | Southampton | Burnley | Bournemouth
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Match Thread: Chelsea vs. Liverpool

Chelsea vs Liverpool

Overview

Match Day 26
Kick-off: Sunday, 6th of Feb 2011 at 4.00pm GMT (11am East Coast, 3am Sydney)
Location: Stamford Bridge, Chelsea, London
Referee: Andre Marriner (16 matches, 2 red cards)
Assistant referees: Scott Ledger & Adam Watts
Fourth official: Kevin Friend
Previous Fixture: Liverpool won 2-0 at Anfield with Fernando Torres scoring two goals. The match marked the beginning of a form slump for the title holders. Soccernet Match Report
Television: Live on Sky Sports 1 (UK), Fox Sports (Aus) and Fox Soccer Channel (USA)
Websites: Liverpool Latest News, Chelsea Latest News

Reddit Live Chat

LIVE CHAT NOW OPEN
[http://live-news.appspot.com]
If you have problems accessing live chat, privmsg me here or email me on my username at gmail.com

Match News

Match Trivia

Pre-Match Press Quotes

We are more important than any player they have got. We'll play against whoever they put on the pitch. I would expect they would relish the battle against him [Torres] but they have competed brilliantly against everyone since I have come in
-- Kenny Dalglish, Liverpool Manager

Media

Site Links
Soccernet Gamecast
Guardian Gamecast
Sky Sports(UK) Preview

Live Streams

Streams will be updated 30-15 minutes before the game. Check back here
Site Links
LiveTV Homepage STREAMS
myp2p Homepage STREAMS
atdhe Homepage
rojadirecta HOMEPAGE (scroll down to liverpool vs chelsea) STREAM

Match Odds

The price on Liverpool has been shifting a lot while Chelsea have shortened. A lot of money on Torres to score at $2.20
Agency Chelsea Draw Liverpool
SportingBet 1.53 3.70 5.75
William Hill 1.57 3.75 6.00
Bet365 1.57 4.00 6.00
Betfair 1.64 4.30 6.00
Bets: 2-2 is $19, while Chelsea to lead at half time and Liverpool to win is paying $41

Table

Pos Team P W D L F A D P
1 Man Utd 25 15 9 1 55 24 31 54
2 Arsenal 25 15 5 5 54 27 27 50
3 Man City 26 14 7 5 42 22 20 49
4 Chelsea 24 13 5 6 46 21 25 44
5 Tottenham 25 12 8 5 35 27 8 44
6 Sunderland 26 9 10 7 32 31 1 37
7 Liverpool 25 10 5 10 33 31 2 35
8 Bolton 26 8 9 9 36 37 -1 33
9 Stoke 25 10 3 12 31 32 -1 33
10 Newcastle 25 8 7 10 40 38 2 31

Stats

Chelsea Liverpool
Top Scorers Florent Malouda 9 Fernando Torres
Didier Drogba 9 Steven Gerrard
Salomon Kalou 7 Dirk Kuyt
Nicolas Anelka 6 Maxi Rodríguez
Assists Didier Drogba 8 Steven Gerrard
Yellows Branislav Ivanovic 7 Fernando Torres
Reds Michael Essien 1 Lucas
Last 5 (home/away) W-D-W-D-L W-L-L-L-L
Last 5 W-W-W-L-D W-W-W-D-L
Avg. Scored1 2.2
Avg. Conceeded1 0.6
*1. Average at home for home team, away for away team *

Last 5 Results

Chelsea Result Liverpool Result
Sunderland (A) 4-2 Stoke (H) 2-0
Bolton (A) 4-0 Fulham (H) 1-0
Blackburn (H)) 2-0 Wolves (A) 3-0
Wolves (A) 0-1 Everton (H) 2-2
Aston Villa (H) 3-3 Blackpool (A) 1-2

Lineups

Chelsea

Manager:
Formation:
Unavailable:
In doubt:
Possible Starting (unconfirmed)
No. Player Pos
1 Petr Cech GK
17 José Bosingwa RB
2 Branislav Ivanovic CB
26 John Terry CB
3 Ashley Cole LB
5 Michael Essien CM
12 Jon Obi Mikel CM
8 Frank Lampard CM
39 Nicolas Anelka RW
9 Fernando Torres ST
11 Didier Drogba LW
Subs
No. Player Pos
22 Ross Turnbull GK
4 David Luiz CB
15 Florent Malouda F
19 Paulo Ferreira D
21 Solomon Kalou F
51 Josh McEchran M
43 Sala

Liverpool

Manager:
Formation:
Unavailable:
In doubt:
Starting (Confirmed - LFC)
No. Player Pos
25 Reina GK
23 Jamie Carragher CB
34 Skrtel CB
5 Agger CB
34 Kelly RWB
2 Johnson LWB
21 Lucas CM
8 Gerrard CM
17 Maxi Rodríguez LM
4 Meireles CAM
18 Kuyt ST

Live Updates

Min Action
0' KICK OFF
33' FUCK!! MAXI!!
45' HALF TIME - Awesome Game. Torres had one chance, runs onto a ball from Drogba that was cut across goal. Brilliant last second block from Carragher. And then there was Maxi. Maxi, maxi maxi. No doubt that video will be all over reddit within an hour.
45' SECOND HALF
65' SUBSTITUTION CHELSEA Solomon Kalou (9M pounds) has come on for Fernando Torres (50M pounds)
68' RAUL MEIRELES!!!! LIVERPOOOOOL!
90' FULL TIME what a game, what a weekend!
(Apologies for not keeping up a running game log. I got a bit carried away watching the game. Almost had a heart attack)

Match Overview

Chelsea 0 Liverpool 1
Meireles 68'
_____________________ ___ _____________________ ___

Match Stats

Chelsea Liverpool
0(0) Shots (on Goal) 0(0)
0 Fouls 0
0 Corner Kicks 0
0 Offsides 0
0% Possession 0%
0 Yellow Cards 0
0 Red Cards 0
0 Saves 0

Match Reports

[TBA]
submitted by nikcub to soccer [link] [comments]

Cardiff vs Fulham preview This is a fixture that has certainly produced plenty of goals over the years. Indeed, there have been goals at both ends in all but two of the last 17 games between the Blackpool are 11/5 to win with at least one goal scored by Southend who are 17/2 to win with BTTS landing. A score draw is available at 33/10. Crewe (2/3) are flying high in League Two and a win at home to Oldham (4/1) will keep the pressure on leaders Swindon who were four points clear after the last round of fixtures. Check out our preview of Saturday's action in the third round of the FA Cup Fulham's Aleksandar Mitrovic celebrates his goal against promotion rivals Leeds last month Blackpool in 1953-54 Preston have yet to win the League Cup title, but they were runners-up in 1888, 1922, 1937, 1954, 1964. Preston’s main rivals are Blackpool and the two teams square off against each other in the West Lancashire derby. In their first ever meeting in the West Lancashire derby (1901) Preston recorded a 4-1 win over Blackpool. Fulham vs Wigan Preview, Predictions & Betting Tips Fulham and Wigan are poised to serve up an open contest when they meet in an EFL Championship fixture at Craven Cottage. Both teams are poor at the back and should produce BTTS while the Cottagers’ solid home form means they are backed to edge an outcome of over 2.5 goals.

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