Predicted Newcastle team v Brighton – 7 changes
This is the predicted Newcastle team v Brighton and formation.
Rafa Benitez has confirmed that both Jesus Gamez and Aleksandar Mitrovic won’t play any part tomorrow.
Florian Lejeune will be still out with a foot injury, whilst the big news on Friday was when Rafa revealed that Rob Elliot had picked up a thigh injury and was also ruled out.
The positive news is that Isaac Hayden is now reported to be available for selection after recovering from his knock.
On Wednesday night Rafa Benitez surprised a lot of people, firstly with his team selection, then with the ultra defensive set-up.
I think both things are set to change comprehensively on Saturday, with the manager going all out for three points.
I can see seven changes being made, including five of the front six I believe will play against Brighton.
I think the Joselu and Gayle combination has worked as well as anything in recent games and with both players prepared to work hard, I think they will be reunited.
Whilst he denied it was the case, Rafa Benitez clearly left many of his better players out of the team which played Manchester City, as he saved them for more winnable games.
As well as Gayle set to start, man of the match at West Ham, Christian Atsu will definitely play, having also looked very good as a lat sub on Wednesday.
The same is the case for Mikel Merino who looked more like the player who impressed earlier in the season, when he also came off the bench against Man City.
Whilst Rolando Aarons was abysmal when given his chance on Wednesday and Matt Ritchie will be back in after enjoying a rest.
Alongside Merino in the middle is a bigger decision but I can’t see Rafa wanting to go with Shelvey, so guessing he will want Hayden in if he is fully fit, as his energy will be needed (I wouldn’t be surprised though to see Mohamed Diame then play at Stoke with Rafa rotating some players/positions).
At the back, Karl Darlow will obviously come in for the injured Elliot, whilst both Lascelles and Yedlin are no-brainers.
At left-back, I think that despite Dummett doing ok against Manchester City in a back five, Manquillo once again gave a committed display and think he will stay in the team at the Geordie defender’s expense.
Ciaran Clark set to come back in for Chancel Mbemba after he was also given the night off on Wednesday.
The predicted Newcastle team v Brighton:
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