Manchester United are set to return to Premier League action for the first time since their historic 6-1 loss at the hands of Tottenham Hotspur. The Red Devils will travel to St. James' Park to face a Newcastle United side who have begun the season in great form.
The Magpies have not played a fixture against the Red Devils while being above them on the Premier League table since 2013. The visitors enter the game in 16th place on the table, while Newcastle currently the occupy ninth. Steve Bruce's side prevailed victorious over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men during their last trip to Tyneside after Matty Longstaff rifled home to give Newcastle a well-deserved 1-0 win.
The visitors are in dire need of a confidence-boosting win after a terrible start to the campaign — their worst start to the campaign since 1986-87. However, the circumstances leading up to this fixture make it a more complicated situation for Manchester United.
Newcastle United vs Manchester United Head-to-Head
Historically, Manchester United have always held the upper hand over Saturday's hosts, having won a staggering 87 games against them, and losing 43. In recent times, though, St James' Park has proven to be a tricky venue to travel to for Solskjaer's men.
They've ended up on the losing side on two out of the last three occasions they've faced each other in Tyneside by scorelines of 1-0 both times. Their showing last time around was arguably one of Manchester United's worst displays under Solskjaer.
And now, given that they're heading into the fixture with the confidence levels of the team being alarmingly low, the Magpies will look to make it three wins in four at their fabled stadium against their famous opponents.
Newcastle United Form Guide (Premier League): W-L-D-W
Manchester United Form Guide (Premier League): L-W-L
Newcastle United vs Manchester United Team News
Manchester United's under-fire captain Harry Maguire picked up a knock while on England duty, but could possibly return in time to face Newcastle. Elsewhere, Anthony Martial will serve the first of his three-game suspension after a red card against Tottenham Hotspur.
New signings Facundo Pellestri and Alex Telles could possibly feature but will need fitness tests, much like Axel Tuanzebe, who has recently recovered from a long-term injury. Edinson Cavani, however, will remain unavailable as he is currently isolating.
Injured/Unavailable: Phil Jones (knock), Edinson Cavani (isolation)
Doubtful: Harry Maguire (knock), Axel Tuanzebe, Facundo Pellestri, Alex Telles (doubts over match fitness)
Suspended: Anthony Martial (direct red card)
Newcastle United currently have a number of first-team players on the injury table, including the likes of Ciaran Clark, Paul Dummett, Matty Longstaff, Martin Dubravka, Matt Ritchie, and Dwight Gayle.
Star man Allan Saint-Maximin, who recently signed a new deal at the club, will also be available after being an injury doubt for the fixture. Jamaal Lascelles and Fabian Scharr are expected to be available as well.
Injured: Ciaran Clark (thigh), Paul Dummett (tendon), Matty Longstaff (thigh), Martin Dubravka (ankle), Matt Ritchie (shoulder), Dwight Gayle (knee)
Newcastle United vs Manchester United Predicted XIs
Newcastle United Predicted XI: Karl Darlow, Javier Manquillo, Jamaal Lascelles, Federico Fernandez, Jamal Lewis, Allan Saint-Maximin, Jonjo Shelvey, Isaac Hayden, Jeff Hendrick, Joelinton, Callum Wilson
Manchester United Predicted XI: David de Gea, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw, Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matic, Mason Greenwood, Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, Odion Ighalo
Newcastle United vs Manchester United Prediction
St. James' Park isn't the easiest venue to travel to expecting a comfortable win, it is a tricky fixture even without considering Manchester United's current crisis at the moment. When the latter is factored in as well, it deteriorates their chances of a win even further, as Newcastle United are currently on a good run at the start of the season and would look to pile further misery onto Manchester United.
It is also important to note that without the likes of Martial and Edinson Cavani, due to which they could ultimately struggle to break down a rugged Magpies outfit.
That being said, Solskjaer will expect a strong response from his men after what was their joint-heaviest Premier League defeat in their history.
Scoreline Prediction: Newcastle United 1-1 Manchester United
Published 16 Oct 2020, 23:58 IST