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Charlie Nicholas predicts Newcastle v Burnley – Says luck set to run out

9 months ago
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Charlie Nicholas has been casting his ‘expert’ eye over this Saturday’s game at St James Park.

In the black and white corner you have a team in terrible form, only one (very lucky against Chelsea) win in the past nine Premier League games. Only seven goals for Newcastle in their last 11 PL matches and no goals at all in the last three games.

In complete contrast, Burnley have picked up four wins and a draw in their last five PL games and scored nine goals.

In contrast to one Premier League goal all season from the combined talents of Gayle, Joelinton, Carroll and Muto, Burnley’s (fit) strikers are all on form. Ashley Barnes is coming back from injury but in this last five game run, Wood, Rodriguez and Vydra have all scored two goals each.

Despite these two sets of form, Charlie Nicholas predicts a Newcastle win (2-1).

His reasoning? That Burnley’s luck (according to Nicholas) could run out, whilst he also appears under the impression that Newcastle have been unlucky recently.

Nothing could be further from the truth really for NUFC, as the past four games saw a ridiculously lucky point at Everton due to two injury time Lejeune goals, a very very lucky 0-0 draw at home to Norwich who came and dominated, a deserved defeat at Arsenal although 4-0 was a bit harsh, then a most fortunate 1-0 loss at Palace who could and should have won by four or five.

As for Burnley, the stats don’t suggest luck as the big factor in their recent run of results.

They started the five game run with a 2-1 home win over Leicester and a 2-0 victory at Old Trafford, where they probably needed things to go their way to pick up all six points. However, these last three matches they have deserved their seven points.

A 0-0 draw at home to Arsenal saw Burnley have 15 shots to Arsenal’s 13, then a 2-1 win at Southampton saw Burnley with six shots on target to the hosts’ two. Whilst last time out they beat Bournemouth 3-0 at home, the stats showing 10 v 4 in terms of shots on target and 7 v 3 when it came to corners.

I don’t want to look on the down side but you have to accept that a struggling Newcastle side are really up against it on Saturday, with the visitors full of confidence.

The real story of Burnley this season, Charlie Nicholas totally misses.

Until picking up those seven recent points off Man Utd, Leicester and Arsenal, in their previous 10 games against clubs currently in the top half of the table, Burnley had picked up only one point from a possible 30.

Burnley’s season has indeed been overwhelmingly built on punishing the strugglers, those in the bottom half of the table.

In 14 games this season against bottom half teams, Burnley have now won nine, drawn two and lost only three. Those nine wins including the 1-0 victory at Turf Moor over Newcastle. Dyche’s team picking up a massive 29 points from a possible 42 against bottom half clubs, home and away.

In these 14 games against bottom half teams, Burnley have conceded only nine goals and scored 23.

In the 13 matches against top half team, Burnley have scored only 10 and conceded a massive 30.

It really has been a season of two halves but in terms of when playing the stronger and weaker teams, not games early and late in the season.

Eddie Howe has been in his job 18 more days than Sean Dyche, both appointed by their respective clubs in October 2012. Both using their experience to keep the respective clubs in the Premier League in recent seasons, usually relatively comfortably by the end of the season.

Premier League experience was becoming a distant memory for Steve Bruce until Mike Ashley dipped into the Championship to appoint him.

Can Bruce yet show that this isn’t a season built almost totally on Martin Dubravka and luck?

Terrible form for clubs below them in the last couple of months have allowed Newcastle to somehow still have a seven point cushion to relegation but that won’t last, so can Steve Bruce pull NUFC out of this run that is looking worse by the week?

Here’s hoping that like Steve Bruce, Charlie Nicholas is carrying luck with his match prediction, as nothing makes sense when it comes to his logic in making the prediction.

Charlie Nicholas talking to Sky Sports:

“Burnley are in great form.

“I still feel in recent weeks they have had rode their luck, with the decisions that have come their way.

“That could run out.

“Newcastle have had the opposite effect.

“They were sitting in a precious position of safety, but still have plenty of work to do, with three games to win and only 11 remaining now – I think this is where it begins.

“Burnley are unpredictable.

“Dwight McNeil added a goal from a different area, Matej Vydra has come back and played well, while Jay Rodriguez has been scoring too.

“Steve Bruce knows it has not been great recently but they know if they can get this win it will be a step closer to safety for them.

“Prediction is Newcastle 2 Burnley 1.”

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