Mon. Dec 6th, 2021

Team news, stats and prediction ahead of Newcastle vs Leeds in the Premier League on Friday Night Football; kick-off 8pm.

Team news

Newcastle midfielder Joe Willock is available for Friday night’s Premier League clash with Leeds after shaking off a knock.

Willock and defenders Ciaran Clark and Javier Manquillo all sustained minor injuries in Saturday’s 4-1 defeat at Manchester United, but the trio are expected to be fit, while winger Ryan Fraser has returned to training after an ankle problem.

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Steve Bruce has insisted he will not be swayed from his mission as he attempts to turn around Newcastle’s poor start to the season

However, striker Callum Wilson (thigh) will miss out once again, as will keeper Martin Dubravka (foot), defender Paul Dummett and midfielder Jonjo Shelvey (both calf), while head coach Steve Bruce faces a decision over whether to replace Freddie Woodman in goal with the fit-again Karl Darlow (Covid-19).

Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa has a central defensive dilemma with Pascal Struijk, Diego Llorente and Robin Koch all ruled out.

Struijk starts a three-game ban following his straight red card in Sunday’s home defeat to Liverpool, while Llorente (muscle strain) and Koch (pubis) have not recovered from injury.

Adam Forshaw is still out due to a muscle strain, but is expected to return to contention next week and deadline-day signing Daniel James is pushing for his first start after making his debut off the bench last weekend.

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Leeds head coach Marcelo Bielsa has asked for justification on why Pascal Struijk’s red card for his challenge on Harvey Elliott was not overturned, despite the injured Liverpool midfielder claiming the incident did not merit a red

How to follow

Newcastle vs Leeds is live on Sky Sports Premier League from 7.30pm; kick-off 8pm. Sky Sports customers can watch in-game clips in the live match blog on the Sky Sports website and app. Highlights will also be published on the Sky Sports digital platforms and the Sky Sports Football YouTube channel shortly after the final whistle.

Friday 17th September 7:00pm

Kick off 8:00pm

Last time out…

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Manchester United’s win over Newcastle in the Premier League

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Liverpool’s win over Leeds in the Premier League

Jones Knows prediction:

There has been plenty of talk surrounding ‘home advantage’ this season with fans back at grounds. Well, this one could be a case of ‘home disadvantage’ for Newcastle. Leeds – without a win this season – will be circling this fixture in their diary as the one to get their season up and running in front of a home crowd that are on the turn. Just one point taken from Newcastle’s first four games has come with a dollop of positives from Steve Bruce, but the tidal wave of negativity from the fanbase is building to a crescendo. It could boil over at St James’ Park.

Bruce can point to some fluent attacking play in the defeats to West Ham and Manchester United but the numbers paint a worrying picture. They have lost the ‘expected goals battle’ in all four of their fixtures, posting a total of 4.29 xG for and a whopping 10.53 xG against. Also, Newcastle have conceded the most Premier League goals since Project Restart (June 2020), shipping 91 in 51 games. A set of numbers that screams relegation battle.

Leeds have not exactly been setting the world alight either but Marcelo Bielsa’s style will always make them a threat against leaky defences – as shown by their seven goals scored against Newcastle in the two fixtures last season. A Leeds win is fancied at anything bigger than evens and their shots line of more than 16 is worth a tickle as Bielsa notoriously demands his teams to keep on attacking whatever the match scenario.


BETTING ANGLE: Leeds to have 16 or more shots at goal (6/4 with Sky Bet)

Opta stats

  • Newcastle lost both league meetings with Leeds last season, having lost just one of their previous 11 against the Whites (W7 D3).
  • Leeds are looking to win three consecutive league games against Newcastle for the first time since October 1967, while they haven’t won back-to-back away league games against the Magpies since April 1958.
  • Newcastle have only failed to score in one of their last 15 league meetings with Leeds (W8 D3 L4), going down 0-2 at home in September 2002.
  • Leeds have alternated between defeat (3) and victory (3) in each of their six Premier League away games played on Fridays, with the Whites beating Fulham 2-1 in their last such match.
  • Newcastle have conceded more goals than any other side in the Premier League this season (12), while the Magpies also have the highest xG against figure in the competition this term (10.5).
  • Leeds haven’t failed to win any of their first five league games in a top-flight campaign since 1946-47, when they finished bottom with their lowest points total in a single league season (24, converting to three points per win).

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