Newcastle United v West Ham United | Match Preview
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Newcastle United v West Ham United | Match Preview

26/03/24 18:57

The early Premier League kick-off on Saturday sees two European fighting teams go at it as Newcastle take on West Ham at St James’ Park. This game is going to be key in the battle for European football with just four points separating them.

Newcastle have certainly dipped off this season. Currently they sit in 10th place on just 40 points - four away from West Ham and seven away from 6th place Manchester United.

Scoring goals hasn’t been an issue for them this season having scored 59 goals so far this season - just one less than fourth placed Aston Villa and four goals less than title challengers Manchester City. However they have conceded a lot of goals that they will be disappointed in. Thus why they are so low in the table in comparison to where they may want to be at this point in the season.

Isak

The Magpies have seen just two wins in their last five games - one of which was a penalty shootout victory against Blackburn Rovers in the FA Cup. Their last win came at the beginning of the month against Wolves. A 3-0 victory thanks to goals from Alexander Isak, Anthony Gordon and Tino Livramento.

However their last result was a loss at the hands of Manchester City in the FA Cup Quarter Finals. Something they will look to bounce back from in this game.

West Ham on the other hand are currently sat 7th in the table and within touching distance of the Red Devils ahead of them.

Just one loss in their last five games - that loss coming in the first leg of their Europa League clash with Freiburg - has seen them looking very impressive. Despite this their last two Premier League games have ended in draws.

Last time out it was a 1-1 draw with Aston Villa. Michael Antonio scored their only goal of the game before Nicolo Zaniolo equalised. Against a high flying Villa side they are sure to be somewhat impressed with that result. But David Moyes will look to take it one step further in this game.

These sides have faced one another an astonishing 142 times in their histories with Newcastle coming out on top 58 times to the Hammers 43. That record is emphasised considering West Ham haven’t beaten the Magpies since 2021.

Despite this fixture swaying more towards Newcastle over the years their last game earlier on in the season ended in a draw. The score was 2-2 at the London Stadium with goals from Isak, Tomáš Souček and Mohammed Kudus. A closely fought fixture which both sides will look to change in this one.

Eddie Howe’s side will still be without Sven Botman, Callum Wilson and Nick Pope in this game who remain unavailable due to injury. Despite this they could see returns for Livramento, Harvey Barnes and Kieran Trippier which will surely be seen as positive news.

Moyes’ side are only missing one player this weekend - Edson Alvarez who is suspended in this game as a result of collecting too many yellow cards.

With so little games left in the season the race for those European spots is huge for both sides making this a must watch game. It is bound to be exciting with a win being huge for both teams end of the season hopes. A closer fought fixture like this may suggest a draw is on the cards but in what will be a very intense game anything can happen.

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