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Predicted Newcastle team v Burnley has these four changes

5 months ago

Looking ahead to today’s Newcastle team v Burnley.

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

Thirteen defeats and six draws, an ever so bleak run of form these past four months, with a better display last weekend against Tottenham but still no win.

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 Burnley.

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

Fabian Schar and Isaac Hayden are of course almost certain to miss the rest of the season.

Jamaal Lascelles now joining them with a stress fracture to the foot.

Ryan Fraser another ruled out, whilst Bruce said it was touch and go on whether Andy Carroll would be available for the squad, depending on the final couple of training sessions.

As for Allan Saint-Maximin it was better news, he is now fully fit and available for selection in the starting eleven, having looked clearly less than fully fit in his sub appearance last Sunday.

Steve Bruce though saying Federico Fernandez is fit for selection now, whilst Callum Wilson also returns to the squad. Though having missed seven games, it would be a big risk to throw him straight back in from the start.

Newcastle go into the weekend the only PL team not to have won any of their last six matches, indeed no wins in the last seven.

Time for Steve Bruce and his players to step up and not just rely on Fulham continuing to fail.

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

Dubravka, Murphy, Krafth, Lascelles, Dummett, Ritchie, Shelvey, Sean Longstaff, Almiron, Gayle, Joelinton (Subs: Darlow, Clark, Matt Longstaff, Saint-Maximin, Lewis, Hendrick, Manquillo, Willock, Anderson)

So which Newcastle United team will Steve Bruce pick this afternoon against Burnley?

Dubravka will start of course but potentially major changes in front of him.

It may be risky but I’m backing Steve Bruce to make some brave decisions, decisions that I think need to be made despite the improved showing against Spurs.

Burnley are a far different proposition that present different challenges AND opportunities. So I think we need a change of players and formation, partly due to those available.

If Lascelles was available, I would be tempted to have kept the back five, but instead I think it will be a back four with Fernandez and Clark there.

Against the big physical Burnley threat, these two have to play.

An easy decision to leave out Krafth but not so much Murphy.

I think Manquillo will come in at right-back as we will need his mobility and determination against the excellent Dwight McNeil.

Murphy for me doesn’t get into the team as a winger and especially not with Allan Saint-Maximin back available.

So ASM will certainly get a place but I think Ritchie stays in the team, he can play as a winger as well of course and his battling qualities are perfect against Burnley.

In the middle of the pitch, I thought Sean Longstaff actually did well last week and gave us legs in midfield, I think he stays in. I would like to see see him paired with Joe Willock but Bruce’s favourite Jonjo Shelvey is seemingly undroppable, so the Arsenal loan player is set to be on the bench again despite that late goal that saved a point against Tottenham.

Almiron of course plays, whilst another Brucey favourite Joelinton will also keep his place, Dwight Gayle dropping out.

If fully wound up then of course Callum Wilson starts but after two months out he won’t be fully match fit and indeed, I think it will be a positive to have him as an impact sub today for 20 or 25 minutes, especially if Newcastle need a goal.

Giving this predicted Newcastle team v Burnley:

Dubravka, Manquillo, Fernandez, Clark, Dummett, Ritchie, Shelvey, Sean Longstaff, Almiron, Saint-Maximin, Joelinton


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