Chelsea set to continue with their impressive form from the previous Eight matches in all competitions.
Newcastle have had a bit of a mixed start to the new season, having won and lost three each of their eight league outings so far and drawn two. Steve Bruce’s Magpies sit 13th in the Premier League table and head into the weekend’s fixture aiming to bounce back from a 2-0 defeat to Southampton prior to the international break.
Chelsea have recovered strongly from their early-season jitters, putting together an eight-game unbeaten run in all competitions, winning their last four on the bounce. Following their 4-1 win over Sheffield United, the Blues are fifth in the standings, three points off of leaders Leicester City and a win on Saturday would see them move to the top, although it might be temporary.
The corresponding fixture last season saw Newcastle pull off a surprise 1-0 win over Chelsea, courtesy a goal from Isaac Hayden deep into stoppage time. And ahead of their latest meeting at St. James’ Park this weekend, The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at both the teams.
Jonjo Shelvey is back in training for Newcastle after having undergone surgery on a hernia problem and may be expected to play some part on Saturday. Matt Ritchie has also resumed light training which will be a boost for Steve Bruce.
SB on injuries:
“It might be a bit early for Jonjo Shelvey but he’s trained over the last three days. Matt Ritchie is another one who has trained and it’s good news for us all that they’re around the group again and available for selection.” pic.twitter.com/WX3sx2s71b
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) November 20, 2020
Probable Lineup (5-3-2): Darlow; Murphy, Schar, Lascelles, Fernandez, Lewis; Hendrick, Hayden, Longstaff; Joelinton, Saint-Maximin
Injuries: Dwight Gayle, Martin Dubravka, Ryan Fraser and Paul Dummett are pretty much ruled out.
Doubtful: Callum Wilson (Thigh), Almiron(Returned late from international duty)
Chelsea will continue to be without the services of Christian Pulisic as he recovers from an ankle injury, Frank Lampard confirmed. Kai Havertz is back in training having completed his isolation period and tested negative for coronavirus, although he might not be rushed back for Saturday’s game.
Thiago Silva flew back in late from international duty with Brazil and might not be involved on Saturday but Ben Chilwell is likely to be fit and available after having sat out of England’s UEFA Nations League clash against Iceland due to a back problem.
Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Mendy; James, Zouma, Rudiger, Chilwell; Kante, Jorginho, Mount; Ziyech, Abraham, Werner
- Chelsea have won five of their last seven Premier League meetings with Newcastle United (L2). However, the Blues have managed to keep just one clean sheet during this run.
- Newcastle United have lost just one of their last seven Premier League home games against Chelsea (W5 D1). Steve Bruce’s side won this exact fixture last season 1-0.
- Chelsea are unbeaten in their last six Premier League games (W3 D3). Only Tottenham are on a longer such run in the competition (7).
- Newcastle United have won two of their last three Premier League home matches (L1), as many as they had in their previous 11 (W2 D4 L5).
- Chelsea are the highest scorers in the Premier League so far this season, with 20 goals.
Spurs Face Off with the Cityzens
Matt Doherty is unavailable after testing positive for coronavirus while on Republic of Ireland duty. In his absence, Serge Aurier is expected to fill in at right-back for Tottenham. Apart from Doherty, Erik Lamela and Harry Winks miss out against Manchester City as well. However, there is some good news, as Steven Bergwijn is fit and available.
In the pre-match conference, Mourinho provided an update on Bergwijn, Saying, “He went to the international team injured. He was not involved in our match against West Brom, not even on the bench, because that week he was injured.”
“Even so, he reported to the national team, they had their medical team analysing him and they decided they didn’t want to keep him there, because he wouldn’t be ready for the next match. So, he stayed here for the last two weeks, and in that time, he has managed to recover, and he’s ready for tomorrow.”
Tottenham Predicted XI: Lloris; Aurier, Alderweireld, Dier, Reguilon; Sissoko, Hojbjerg; Bale, Ndombele, Son; Kane
In the visiting dugout, Pep Guardiola, will also have do without three first-team players. Fernandinho is out with a stomach problem while Nathan Ake is sidelined with the hamstring issue he sustained during the international break. Benjamin Mendy is the third absentee as he continues his battle to regain match fitness.
“Fernandinho is not fit. He has a bit of gastroenteritis, something in his stomach. Sergio trained this week. Raheem trained for the first time today with the team.” Guardiola said in a pre-match conference.
Manchester City Predicted XI: Ederson; Walker, Dias, Laporte, Cancelo; De Bruyne, Rodri, Foden; Torres, Jesus, Sterling
Manchester United Vs. West Brom
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has had nibbling issues since the start of the 2020/21 Premier League. One important aspect has been Manchester United’s woeful home form along with their inability to string together positive results. The Red Devils earned a rather impressive 3-1 comeback win against Everton prior to the international break.
Slaven Bilic has a hard-working squad at his disposal but the defence just seems to be leaking way too often, with West Brom conceding 17 goals so far, the joint-highest in the league. In terms of working hard.
Luke Shaw’s injury means Alex Telles will be handed his first full start in the Premier League at Old Trafford. Elsewhere, Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial all are doubts.
Probable Lineup (4-2-1-3): de Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Tuanzebe, Telles; Fred, McTominay; Fernandes; Greenwood, Cavani, Rashford
Slaven Bilic & co. have been dealt a blow, with two players testing positive for coronavirus. However, the names have been withheld and it will be intriguing to see who they are based on who miss out. As far as injury troubles are concerned, Sam Field and Hal Robson-Kanu are on the treatment table. Callum Robinson is touch-and-go and Bilic would hope the forward is available for the Manchester United fixture.
Probable Lineup (3-5-2): Johnstone; Ivanovic, Bartley, O’Shea; Furlong, Gallagher, Livermore, Krovinovic, Townsend; Pereira, Grant
- Manchester United have actually won just one of their last five home Premier League games against West Brom.
- Manchester United are yet to register a win at home this Premier League season, having accrued just a solitary point from 4 games so far, one point fewer than West Brom’s home tally.
- Manchester United have conceded 10 goals in their last 4 home Premier League games.
- Manchester United have earned 10 yellow cards and a red card in 4 home Premier League games in the 2020/21 season.
- Bruno Fernandes and Donny van de Beek are the only players to have scored at home for Manchester United in the 2020/21 Premier League