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Opinion

Battle of the heavyweights approaching – 1 win in 27

2 months ago
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It is Newcastle v Burnley fast approaching.

A ‘must win’ game that has now become a ‘must must win’ match for many people.

This follows Ciaran Clark’s moment of madness and subsequent NUFC battling draw on Tuesday night, when if Newcastle United had kept 11 men on the pitch for most of the match, I’m sure it would have been a first win of the season.

Speaking of which…

This clash of the heavyweights on Saturday represents a quite shocking stats state of affairs, as between the two clubs, in 27 Premier League matches this season they have only won one between them.

Newcastle United with a Premier League record of Played 14 Won 0 Drawn 7 Lost 7.

Burnley having a PL record this season of Played 13 Won 1 Drawn 7 Lost 5.

If you were a betting man (or woman), there is only one possible result you would wager on surely…

However, Newcastle United have to overturn those odds / expectations, as a draw is of only very limited use at this moment in time, especially against the team who sit only two places and three points above them.

Fourteen draws in the twenty seven combined PL games they have played, those small margins between draws and victories making all the difference, in a bad way, for both Burnley and Newcastle this season.

Indeed, in most recent times it is emphasised even more, as Newcastle since jettisoning Steve Bruce have lost only two of six, but the other four have been draws not wins.

For Burnley it is even more astonishing, their last eight PL games show six draws, with only one defeat at Man City, the other game their only league win of the season – beating Brentford 3-1 at home.

It does really feel like fate is pointing towards only one result with Newcastle v Burnley on Saturday, unless one of the teams can rise above what has happened so far.

Newcastle at home picking up only four points from a possible twenty one, for Burnley away it is…four points from a possible twenty one.

It seems a long long time ago now, considering what has happened since, but we have already had a Newcastle v Burnley game at St James Park this season. That 90 minutes ended…0-0. Sean Dyche’s team winning on penalties in that League Cup clash.

That of course didn’t stop Steve Bruce repeatedly insisting when talking about the start to the season, that Newcastle hadn’t ‘lost on the night’ to Burnley. Well Steve, it looked very much like a loss to me, chiefly due to the then NUFC Head Coach making nine outfield changes from his Premier League first eleven, despite as always insisting he was taking cup competitions as seriously as the league…

Maybe the form book will be ripped up tomorrow and we will see Newcastle edge a thriller 5-4.

The big welcome difference now of course is that Eddie Howe is going to set up Newcastle to try and attack, rather than just defend, in the vast majority of matches, certainly at home. The Brentford game proof of that and it would have been a comfortable win if not for Darlow’s mistakes for the first and third goals. The opening nine minutes on Tuesday also showing Newcastle’s attacking intent under Eddie Howe.

So, Newcastle v Burnley, bring it on. Yes we would love to see a great match but in reality all that matters on this occasion is a bit of luck and the three points coming our way.

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