Saturday 17 January 5.30pm Live On SKY Sports
This could well be the last match before some kind of permanent appointment is made to take care of team affairs, even if it is just up until the end of the season.
So surely John Carver must look to put out a team to win, if he still harbours any hopes of both getting the job AND carrying any kind of decent backing from amongst the fans.
Obviously he won’t want to risk a hiding either but you would think any kind of defeat would make it hard for even Mike Ashley to give him the job.
Carver himself said he expects a decision to be made before the next match which is on the last day of the month at Hull, hopefully he has got at least that one right!
A couple of extra options are there for the caretaker boss, with Ameobi and Santon looking as though they could start.
I think both may well get the nod and give a new look to the left side and a bit more balance to the team, with Dummett hopefully partnering Coloccini in the middle.
Personally, I would like Riviere to play and make a front three with Cabella and Perez, but I can see the former Monaco forward once again on the bench, with Carver pinning his hopes on Cabella repeating last weekend’s form, with support from Perez and Sissoko.
Anita did ok last week but I can’t see him keeping his place, though sadly you wouldn’t bet against Yoan Gouffran once again appearing bomb proof despite yet another match at Stamford Bridge where he contributed next to nothing.
I’m guessing the team will be organised to give Remy Cabella the best possible platform.
However, the Saint have proved a tough nut to crack both at home and on their travels, conceding only eight goals in ten matches on the road. They’s picked up five wins and a draw on those away trips and last weekend got a deserved and excellent 1-0 win at Old Trafford.
On the other hand they have only scored eleven goals in those ten away matches so if Newcastle could get a couple…
Missing players of the quality of Schneiderlin and Wanyama who have been key to their success from their midfield berths, means there could be the opportunity for Sissoko to take advantage with his international teammate missing.
It will be a long two weeks for John Carver and the rest of us if Newcastle don’t put in a performance today, after yet another desperate show at St.Mary’s in September, the caretaker boss and players owe us one.
Predicted starting 11;
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