Andy Gray has been taking a look at Newcastle’s game against West Brom today.
Despite Steve McClaren bizarrely claiming that Newcastle were unlucky with the scoreline against Everton, Gray points out that by the end Newcastle eventually took the ‘pasting’ they deserved.
Trailing only 1-0 before two late penalties, Newcastle’s goal had led a charmed life with the scousers hitting the woodwork three times and Rob Elliot makes a series of excellent saves.
In contrast, the Everton keeper didn’t have a serious save to make and Aleksandar Mitrovic put Newcastle’s only real quality chance wide, with the score at 1-0.
Andy Gray says that this match is ‘an opportunity’ for Newcastle and if the Magpies are to survive then surely the games at St James Park against the likes of West Brom, Crystal Palace, Swansea, Sunderland and Swansea are going to be pivotal.
However, he has predicted a score draw in the match with Tony Pulis teams hard to beat, Andy Gray thinks that with 29 points from 24 games West Brom can ‘coast their way’ to the end of the season.
If United won this game then the gap would only be five points between them and the Baggies, dragging them onto the outskirts of the relegation fight.
However, the last two matches have seen a similar scenario and a nervous Everton and Watford who were both on really poor runs of form, were both given a leg up by Newcastle, with the wins more or less putting the two clubs safe from any relegation worries.
As things stand, especially with visits to Chelsea and Stoke next, Andy Gray’s predicted point would be little use to Newcastle, though you never can tell and certainly defeat is unthinkable.
On the eve of the match, Daryl Janmaat has stated that a Newcastle victory is the only possible result, let’s hope he is closer to the truth than Andy Gray.
Andy Gray writing for Paddy Power:
“This is an opportunity for Newcastle. They took a pasting in the end against Everton.
“Tony Pulis is tough to beat though and can kind of afford to coast their way through the last series of fixtures.
“They’ll have enough to avoid relegation but I’m calling this one down the middle.”