West Brom v Newcastle United
Sunday 25 March 2012 4pm
Live On SKY 

We all know that football, and Newcastle United especially, is an unpredictable business BUT recent results suggest this could be a very tight match with maybe a single goal deciding it either way.

Newcastle haven’t defended too badly in recent matches and ground out a one goal win against Norwich thanks largely to a clean sheet, it is at the other end where United have struggled in the last few matches – though with Ba, Cisse and Ben Arfa potentially lining up together again it is a line-up capable of scoring goals.

Our first tip goes for Ben Arfa who is a very tempting 14-1 with our betting partners BET365 to score the first goal, in a tight match he is always likely to get his fair share of shots in and/or produce something out of the ordinary.

The home side have largely struggled for goals this season and indeed have only scored fourteen at home, four of those coming against the mackems! In fact their last eight matches have seen them fail to score more than one goal on six occasions, with bizarrely the other two yielding nine – four in that mackem match and five away at Wolves.

Having said that, West Brom at times gave us the run around up at St.James’ Park as they recorded a 3-2 win that was anything but fortunate. That day Odemwingie and Long played really well and they could be reunited as the former is expected to have recovered from injury. Available after suspension is Jonas Olsson who definitely comes into the annoying bracket in previous encounters, a player who fancies himself as a bit of a hardman.

On the United side of things, we are again waiting on the availability of Chieck Tiote who Alan Pardew has announced is 50/50, though whether that is a true reflection or just to keep the Baggies guessing is anybody’s….guess.

Will be interesting to see what other tactical changes, if any, Alan Pardew makes. It surely must be worth retaining the Cisse/Ba partnership as Cisse was certainly getting into the positions last week and obviously scored the hardest chance he got!

Elsewhere, Santon may come in at left-back which then shuffles Jonas up the left and Cabaye back into his favoured middle spot. It is probably fatal but I’ve got a good feeling  about Sunday and I think the players will have taken confidence from getting back on the winning track against Norwich, especially with a clean sheet.

Which leads me to my other two tips, we again go for a Newcastle win with a clean sheet (we tipped it for Norwich and it paid 21-10) which is 9-2 this time and also Newcastle to win by the same scoreline as a week ago, 1-0 which pays 15-2, odds available with BET365 at time of writing.

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