The Newcastle vs Arsenal match will be played this Sunday, December 29, 2013 (5:30 PM Pacific), at the St. James Park. Newcastle is currently 6th after 18 games with 33 points, and Arsenal is the Premier league leader with 39 points after round 18. Arsenal was in a slump of 3 matches without victory, but they managed to beat West Ham on an away match on Thursday, so they’re entering this match with renewed self-confidence. Newcastle is in a great form at the moment, since they haven’t lost in four matches in a row.
Newcastle devastated Stoke in the last game at St. James Park by 5 goals to 1. But, Stoke scored first and played a very good match, until they’ve got a red card and a penalty, and soon after that another red card, so they played over 45 minutes with nine players, and Newcastle took advantage of that. Maybe the dose of inflated self-confidence they received after this persuasive victory will be detrimental to them in this match, since Arsenal surely can give them a bumpy ride.
The Gunners have an easier schedule on paper, they will play against lower ranked teams for the entirety of January, and Newcastle is maybe their toughest opponent in the forthcoming matches. Arsenal must play every game with full power and with a desire to win, so they can survive on top of the league. If they want to win the title, they have to win this type of match consistently, since their title rivals are finding their true form at the moment.
Tiote will be available after his suspension, so the only change in the starting lineup could be Tiote instead of Anita. Jonas Gutierrez will face a late fitness test, and Ryan Taylor is definitely out.
Aaron Ramsey limped off in Arsenal’s victory against West Ham, so he won’t feature in this match. Koscielny could be back to action, but Vermaelen proved in the last two matches that he is back on track too, so Wenger will have to make a hard decision. Sanogo, Chamberlain and Diaby are the long term injured players in Arsenal, and they will not play against Newcastle.
Newcastle vs Arsenal Prediction
Both Newcastle and Arsenal will want maximum points from this match for sure. The game should be open, flowing, both teams will be attacking fiercely, so they could score a lot of goals. Arsenal is the slight favorite in this match, and considering all the facts, they should win this game 1-2.
Newcastle vs Arsenal Television
The match will be televised on NBC Sports Network and Mun2 at 5:30 AM Pacific.