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Predicted Newcastle team v Brighton has these two changes

3 weeks ago
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Looking ahead to tonight’s Newcastle team v Brighton.

Steve Bruce comes into this game on the back of a nineteen game run with only two victories.

Twelve defeats and five draws, an ever so bleak run of form these past three months.

We got a fair bit of guidance from the Steve Bruce pre-match press conference, as to which players would and wouldn’t be available for this Newcastle team v Brighton.

Steve Bruce delivered the news on injury, fitness and potential availability of the Newcastle United players for this key match.

Fabian Schar, Callum Wilson and ASM won’t be back for tonight’s game, so it will be Tottenham the first week in April before maybe Wilson will be back.

ASM is behind Callum Wilson in terms of recovery from his injury, whilst Fabian Schar is unlikely to play again this season.

However, the NUFC Head Coach has indicated that Miguel Almiron could be in the squad tonight as he is back in training.

Steve Bruce reporting no other new injuries.

To help give a starting point, this was the 20 man Newcastle United squad that was selected against West Brom last weekend:

Dubravka, Krafth, Lascelles, Clark, Dummett, Hayden, Shelvey, Willock, Gayle, Fraser, Joelinton (Subs: Darlow, Carroll, Ritchie, Lewis, Hendrick, Fernandez, Manquillo, Murphy, S Longstaff)

So which Newcastle United team will Steve Bruce pick this weekend against Brighton?

The thing is, when you listen to Steve Bruce, you hear very different things compared to what you see with your very own eyes.

These last three games, as well as this Brighton one, were said to be the ‘winnable’ ones according to Steve Bruce, yet he then after the event tries to make out that drawing at home to weakened Villa and Wolves team, as well as at West Brom, are actually good results.

Steve Bruce also tries to make out that Newcastle have had far more scoring chances than was the reality. Only two goals scored in these three matches and both coming from Lascelles, the opposition keepers actually having very few shots to save.

Especially with Fulham losing to Leeds last night, I think Newcastle should be going all out to beat Brighton, as if they did, it would put NUFC five points clear of relegation.

However, I suspect that Steve Bruce will be his usual cautious self and set out to try and keep a clean sheet as his top priority.

Dubravka will start of course.

Whilst at centre-back, Fernandez would be a starter for most of us, but I think Bruce will definitely stick with Clark and Lascelles. Especially with the captain currently being Newcastle’s biggest (only?) goal threat…

Emil Krafth isn’t good enough, simple as that. Javier Manquillo will now be fully fit and I think even Steve Bruce will see that it is now time to bring back in the squad’s best right-back.

Dummett has done pretty well and even did a bit going forward against Villa.

Only injury would now see Jamal Lewis back in the team during this relegation run-in.

When it comes to the midfield, I think Willock and Hayden are obvious selections and Steve Bruce will include them.

However, I fear that Bruce will stick to his favourite Jonjo Shelvey as well. Which could be a major problem against such a mobile opposition whose midfielders like to play at a high tempo, meaning Shelvey could end up bypassed far too easily. I would be giving Sean Longstaff a game to help combat the Brighton midfield.

Whilst Miguel Almiron is back training and may even make the bench, surely not even Steve Bruce will be daft enough to risk throwing him in straight away.

Steve Bruce thinks that Ryan and Fraser and Joelinton are doing well but Newcastle are still struggling to threaten the opposition goal. These last five games have seen only three goals, ASM against Man Utd and those two headers from Lascelles.

Dwight Gayle was poor against Villa and little doubt he wasn’t impressed by Bruce’s tactics.

I wouldn’t like to predict what Steve Bruce will ask him to do bit I have a feeling the Head Coach will spring a surprise and play Andy Carroll from the start.

Giving this predicted Newcastle team v Brighton:

Dubravka, Manquillo, Lascelles, Clark, Dummett, Hayden, Shelvey, Willock, Carroll, Fraser, Joelinton

Only nine matches remaining after tonight’s game and after the international break, the games start to look tougher. Although to be fair, they all look pretty tough when you have Steve Bruce in charge!

However, it would be a massive win for Newcastle if they could beat Brighton, it would put Steve Bruce’s team two points ahead of the Seagulls and five above Fulham (and with a game in hand over Scott Parker’s side).

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