Proper football is back after the pointless international break! Personally, I hope it doesn’t return but that’s just my opinion.
Eddie Howe’s side make the trip to Fulham this weekend who currently occupy 6th place in the table after a decent start to the campaign and they will be hoping to continue their solid start to this year’s competition after winning three games out of the last five in the Premier League.
A certain former Newcastle United player will be looking to prove that letting him go was the wrong decision. Aleksandar Mitrovic is on fire for the London outfit so far this season, finding the net six times in seven appearances. The Serbian International has flourished since he was loaned out in 2018 by Newcastle who were under the guidance of the Spanish waiter…I mean Rafa Benitez. Mitrovic made the switch to Fulham permanently in July 2018 after an impressive loan spell. Oh by the way, the “icon” Rafa also decided to get rid of Ivan Toney…look how that worked out!
In their last game before the international break, The Cottagers dispatched fellow newly promoted side Nottingham Forest 3-2. Things didn’t start off well for Marco Silva’s side as Taiwo Awoniyi put the home side ahead after 11 minutes of play. Tosin Adarobioyo levelled things up in the 54th minute and the turnaround had begun. Goals from Joao Palhinha and Harrison Reed put the visiting side 3-1 ahead after 60 minutes before Lewis O’Brien scored a consolation goal in the 77th minute. Their star striker Mitrovic, made it two games where he has drew blanks this season as he failed to get on the scoresheet.
A victory for Fulham on Saturday against the Magpies could see them climb into the top four if Brighton get defeated by Liverpool and Manchester United fail to beat their neighbors. Fulham have won 12 top flight fixtures against the Geordies so they know that it is achievable.
Newcastle on the other hand have found victories hard to come by so far this season. Their only win so far was the opening day victory over Nottingham Forest at St James’ Park. Five of their last six games have ended in a draw with just one defeat. Things could be worse though, Eddie Howe’s side is still in the top half of the table despite only picking up a point last time out against his former side Bournemouth. Newcastle have had some bullshit VAR decisions against them though which has ruled out goals/goal scoring opportunities and ultimately cost them any chances of picking up three points. The Magpies have done well recently when they have faced Fulham down the road, they have won both their last two games in the capital with an aggregate score of 6-0. However, they have never completed a hat-trick of victory’s at Craven Cottage. A win for Newcastle can take them up to six place if other results also go their way and depending on how the referees feel!
Team news for Fulham: Antonee Robinson will miss out with an ankle problem so Tim Reame is set to continue his run in the side as his replacement. Harry Wilson and Manor Solomon are also out with knocks. Summer signing Palhinha is suspended after racking up five yellow cards. It is yet to be determined who will fit alongside Harrison Reed and who will slot behind the inform Aleksandar Mitrovic who found the net four times during the two games he played for Serbia during the recent break.
Team news for Newcastle: Club record signing Alexander Isaac picked up a knock during the international break for Sweden and is currently unclear on how serious it is. Chris Wood also picked up a rib injury for New Zealand. Some positive news for Eddie Howe is that Jonjo Shelvey is close to returning after a lengthy spell on the treatment table, Callum Wilson and Bruno Guimaraes are hoping to be involved in some capacity. Ryan Fraser will be wanting to retain his place in the side after picking up good form during the break.
Sutty’s Match Prediction: Both sides are playing well so it could go either way. If neither Callum Wilson or Alexander Isaac feature then chances will be hard to come by for the Magpies and they will have to find goals via other outlets. Mitrovic will be wanting to score against his former side though and continue his form so Fulham will be hoping to give him plenty of opportunities to put the ball away. I’d like to see Elliot Anderson get a proper run in the side and be named in the starting eleven, for me he is hands down better than Joe Willock and Sean Longstaff but that’s just my opinion. I have two score predictions: either a 1-1 draw or a sneaky 1-0 win for Newcastle.