This is the predicted Newcastle team v West Ham and formation.

Rafa Benitez held his press conference on Friday lunchtime and gave us an update on who is available.

Jonjo Shelvey competes his two match suspension today, whilst the United boss revealed Jesus Gamez had undergone an ankle operation.

Rafa also stated that Aleksandar Mitrovic still had his ‘small back problem’ and would miss at least the next 10 days, taking him into January and the transfer window…

The manager will have been pretty happy with how he laid his team out last weekend, with Jamaal Lascelles helping to keep the defence relatively tight and restrict Arsenal to not too many chances, all that was missing was for his players to take one of the three or four half decent chances that presented themselves in the closing stages.

I see Rafa keeping quite close to his formation at the Emirates but to change a number of players.

Rob Elliot has done ok since returning so you can’t anticipate any change there but I do think two of the back four could change.

Paul Dummett has had another week of training and must be close to being brought back in, whilst I believe Ciaran Clark may well come in for Florian Lejeune who still hasn’t convinced, even though only two goals conceded in the past two matches since Lascelles came back.

With Shelvey absent, Merino and Hayden seem to pick themselves, whilst Christian Atsu should hopefully show a bit more today going forward, after having to mainly play in his own half last weekend.

Against Arsenal, Rafa rested Matt Ritchie who had started every other Premier League match and having looked jaded recently, it seemed to do wonders for him. The winger coming off the bench and looking far better, his excellent cross should have seen Ayoze Perez score in those closing stages.

West Ham are likely to once again set up very similar to Newcastle with the aim of keeping it tight and finding the first goal.

So I can’t see Rafa returning to playing both Joselu and Gayle up front.

With that in mind, whilst Perez’ finishing was terrible at Arsenal, I think he will keep his place and be expected to help keep it tight by tracking back.

After playing two games in four days, it looked like Rafa Benitez was protecting Dwight Gayle from potential injury against the Gunners, with four of the next five games being against teams near the bottom.

Joselu actually didn’t do too bad last Saturday but Dwight Gayle surely has to be on the pitch today and his pace could prove the difference, especially if the likes of 34 year old James Collins is once again at centre-back.

The predicted Newcastle team v West Ham:

newcastle team v west ham

West Ham v Newcastle Match Betting:

West Ham win 11/10Draw 23/10Newcastle win 14/5

NUFC to win 2-1 12/1Gayle to score first goal 11/2Newcastle win to nil 5/1

All West Ham v Newcastle betting HERE

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  • Wor Lass

    Bearing in mind who`s available and who Rafa won`t play, that`s about the best we could do at the moment and is a good enough team to have a chance of winning – if we can put the ball in the net. I just feel that Rafa prefers Lejeune to Clark, though. Personally, I`d play Mbemba instead of Isaac – he hasn`t looked great this season – but I`m sure Rafa won`t see it that way.

    • TheNutJob

      Clarke for Lejeune, Mbemba for Hayden

  • Leazes Ender

    Who care what you think the team will be …. this is a Commercial Ad for the financial benefit of Mark Jensen, in support of Tax avoidance. I dunno how he lives with himself.

    • TheNutJob

      ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚
      i clicked on the betting link. BetVictor

  • Peaky Magpie

    1-0 win,Ritchie penalty.

    • TheNutJob

      2-1 Hoss volleys in from 25yds for the winner
      ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

      • Peaky Magpie

        Sherry & mincepies out early in TheNutJob house I see ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ but imagine if youโ€™re right !!!

  • Shields Mag

    Got a gut feeling 3 pts today, Lascelles and Clark to start as centre halves. Pleased Lanzini not playing for them today.

    • fistsofsteel2

      Don’t be silly.

  • fistsofsteel2

    West Ham will win by at least 3 goals.

    Rafa out.

  • TheNutJob

    I`d play 2 defensive midfielders, Issac & Chancel with Mikel in the number 10 spot

  • Big Al 1967

    Must be playing with 14 Matthew as you missed out the three guaranteed starters….Lejuene, Manquillo, and Joselu.
    However I do agree that against the likes of Collins movement and pace will find him out. If we go like for like and knock long balls in to Joselu, he will get his pipe and slippers out. Gayle has to start

  • Leazes Ender

    Predicting the ‘least worst’ eleven to fulfil an obligation to the tax dodger Michael Tabor’s systemised Ad-formercials is as futile as rearranging the deckchairs on the Bismarck…… rudderless, going around in circles and waiting for an aerial bombardment.