Paul Merson was proved correct back in May, not often you can say that happens.
Chelsea came to Newcastle with still an outside chance of Champions League football, needing a win and Liverpool to lose.
Paul Merson claimed ‘I just don’t think Chelsea will be at the races. I think they’ll be more focused on the final.’
I doubted that at the time but then when the match came around at St James Park, Chelsea were a disgrace really.
Newcastle were the ones with nothing really to play for but it was they that were first to every ball, even Kante was lethargic.
Whether or not it was the FA Cup they had on their minds, they certainly weren’t at the races against Newcastle.
Six days after losing 3-0 to the Magpies, Chelsea went to Wembley, kept a clean sheet and beat Manchester United 1-0 to lift the FA Cup, yet again!
This time, it is a different Chelsea in that once again they have changed managers, a couple of month after winning that FA Cup final and 14 months since Conte had win them the Premier League.
Chelsea fans keen to get him out of the club and yet it is Newcastle supporters condemned for being too demanding…
Paul Merson declares that Newcastle are now struggling and ‘There’s a bit of a feeling around Newcastle at the moment and I think Chelsea will take advantage.’
For all Newcastle haven’t been great, they did ok in the second half against Spurs (hit woodwork twice and Kenedy wasted a one on one) and should have got something, whilst in a very low quality game and two poor teams, Newcastle should have won the match with that last minute penalty.
It is a bit of a strange situation where Newcastle could very easily have had no points or all six points so far.
Hopefully Sunday will tell us all a lot more and prove Paul Merson wrong.
With Sarri believing in attack there are very likely to be chances at both ends and if Newcastle could take the league, both fans and players could relax a little and really push to see out the win.
Merson goes for a 2-1 away win and doesn’t believe that Newcastle have the quality needed up front.
Rondon and Muto are unknown quantities for Newcastle and very likely they will need to make an impact on Sunday at some stage, if Rafa’s team are to get a positive result.
Paul Merson speaking to Sky Sports:
“I think Newcastle are struggling.
“Why did they let Kenedy take the penalty against Cardiff? He was having a nightmare.
“There’s a bit of a feeling around Newcastle at the moment and I think Chelsea will take advantage.
“Chelsea don’t look amazing at the back, Arsenal ripped them apart at times, but Newcastle don’t have what Arsenal have going forward.
“Maurizio Sarri said he wants Chelsea to be pressing at all times, and it’s a danger when they don’t, even for 20 minutes.
“Just can’t see Newcastle picking them off here. Away win.
“Prediction is Newcastle 1 Chelsea 2.”
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