England Premier League
Sunday 11th August 2019
Kick off at 2pm BST
Venue: St. James' Park
And let’s go…. because nothing is quiet at St. James’ Park and tends to be the case when Mike Ashley is presiding over matters. Rafa Benitez was replaced by Steve Bruce after one too many disagreements on transfers and Bruce has wasted no time in bringing in new faces.
One of those is Brazilian Joelinton who comes from Hoffenheim for £40m. The fee raised questions given that the player has struggled in recent seasons on loan in the Austrian league but there are many South America pundits who are tipping the player for good things, so this could be a real coup for the Magpies, however i have my doubts.
Allan Saint-Maximin is a good buy and comes from Nice for £20m although he has arrived injured. Talking of injuries, Newcastle have brought back the prodigal son, Andy Carroll. The hope is Carroll will regain fitness and this could be a good deal for them, if he can get some games under his belt.
Ayoze Perez and Joselu have been sold but the club have kept the bulk of their first team and it will be fascinating at least to see if Bruce can get more points than Benitez did last season.
Unai Emery had a decent first season with Arsenal as the Gunners failed to qualify for the Champions League but did reach the Europa League final. It was not a vintage year but the club did look solid at home. Though Emery was basically given a free pass in his debut season, there might be more critics in this one if he doesn’t get Arsenal onto the next level.
Signing Nicolas Pepe from Lille for £72m is a great start and the player is very talented and regarded highly in Ligue 1. Can he make that seamless transfer to the Premier League? Paired up with Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang, on paper at least Arsenal might just have one of the deadliest strike forces in England.
The Gunners made some other signings, some surprising like the arrival of David Luiz from Chelsea for £8m. Kieran Tierney has come from Celtic for £25m and William Saliba from Saint Etienne for £27m though the 18 year old defender will be loaned back for this season. On loan Dani Ceballos joins up from Real Madrid and Gabriel Martinelli has been bought for £6m, the youngster is being tipped for big things.
The likes of Stephan Lichsteiner, Laurent Koscielney, Alex Iwobi and Danny Welbeck have all moved on.
Newcastle: Andy Carroll is out with a lack of match fitness and his return date should be at the end of the month. Jack Colback has a groin injury but is fighting to be fit for team selection. Matt Ritchie has a hamstring problem but it could be minor and will be assessed ahead of the game
Arsenal: Mesut Ozil and Saed Kolasinac have been excused from this game over concerns regarding their safety. Alexandre Lacazette will be assessed after his ankle injury. Kieran Tierney will not be available until next month with a groin injury. Nicolas Pepe will be assessed after a lack of match fitness. Hector Bellerin has been out since last season with his knee.
Newcastle vs Arsenal Head to Head:
Last season Arsenal won this fixture 2-1.
Newcastle have only beaten Arsenal once in the last 15 games.
Since 2007 only one game between the teams has finished 0-0.
Newcastle vs Arsenal Prediction:
This could be a close game. Newcastle will want to start on the front foot in Bruce’s first competitive game in charge, and it is at home in what should be a great atmosphere. Arsenal could well be weakened, there will be no Mesut Ozil for example and new signing Nicolas Pepe may not start the game. This is why it could be best to lead in with Over Goals and for the most goals to be scored in the second half as the game goes on and the right substitutions are brought on. If Pepe plays or is even on the bench it may be worth getting on him to score in the game for anytime.
Newcastle vs Arsenal Betting Tips:
Highest Scoring Half: 2nd half at 1.91
Over 2.5 goals at 1.80
Anytime goalscorer: Nicolas Pepe at 2.70