Predicted Newcastle team v Burnley
Thursday 1 January 3pm
A poor match at Turf Moor less than three weeks ago suggested there wasn’t much between the two teams.
A shocking first half for United saw them lucky to be only one down and Alan Pardew brought Remy Cabella on for Ayoze Perez, with his formation not working that night, with the Spaniard anonymous behind Papiss Cisse pushed up.
That Cabella change helped produce a more encouraging second half and a goal off Cisse’s knee won United a point.
To be fair the Perez/Cisse pairing has looked decent the rest of the time but that is one deliberation John Carver hasn’t got to make, Cisse’s suspension seeing him off on African Nations duty until February.
For many fans the selection today will largely be focused on whether Carver continues the Pardew path of playing the hapless Yoan Gouffran rather than accommodating Remy Cabella. It could go a long way to defining his relationship with the fans and indeed his chances of getting the job permanently.
With not a great lot to choose from I can see Newcastle potentially lining up with Coloccini, Taylor and Dummett as three central defenders again, with Janmaat and back from injury Haidara as wing-backs.
The rest of the team pretty much picking itself in my eyes, though that Gouffran/Cabella question remains.
Flair could be needed as despite not scoring many, Burnley don’t concede lot either, you have to go back to November 1 since the visitors last conceded more than two goals in a match.
They did of course concede two against Manchester City in their last game, but a great fightback shocked City and Burnley grabbed a most unlikely point with goals from Barnes and Boyd.
They have four and three goals each respectively, while their best player and supposed Newcastle target Danny Ings also has four.
If United can conjure up two goals then I think a win is on the cards.
Over to you and your selection, John Carver.
Predicted starting 11;
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