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Paul Merson verdict on the Newcastle United situation ahead of Saturday

6 months ago
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Paul Merson has been talking about Newcastle United and the current situation at St James’ Park.

The former Arsenal player speaking, with now approaching the second match of the season.

Paul Merson discussing the possibilities ahead of Newcastle United playing away at Man City, a massive match and challenge.

The Premier League table looks like this on Thursday, ahead of this weekend’s games.

Newcastle United kicking off at 8pm on Saturday night at Man City

Paul Merson speaking to Sportskeeda:

“This season is the real test for Newcastle United.

“They were incredible against Aston Villa and the Magpies will have a go at City but Pep Guardiola and co. are just too good right now.

“Kevin De Bruyne is a big player for City and his absence is going to have a telling effect on them.

“It’ll no doubt be a major blow for them. It will be interesting to see how Haaland performs in his absence

“Erling Haaland is a goalscorer. He doesn’t mess about. He just wants to get into the box and score goals much like Ruud van Nistelrooy during his time at Manchester United. People won’t be worried if he can keep scoring goals.

“I don’t think he’s going to have much trouble scoring a lot of goals the way he is going.

“Despite everything that Newcastle will throw at them, City should be able to brave this challenge particularly since the game is happening at the Etihad.

“Prediction is Man City 2 Newcastle 1”

I think to be honest, every new season is ‘the real test’ for pretty much every team, only as good as your next result / season etc etc.

This particularly applies to those team who are achieving at the top end.

Applying even more so to Newcastle United, it would appear.

It is almost as if the likes of Paul Merson and others keep repeatedly mentioning this is now the big test for Newcastle United, because they might possible be hoping things go wrong for NUFC.

Eddie Howe turned things around within weeks of arriving at St James’ Park, Newcastle having the third best form in the final half of the 2021/22 season.

Then 2022/23, Newcastle United had top four form for a full season.

Now for 2023/24, Newcastle have arguably the best team AND squad they’ve had in a long time, far stronger than a year ago and certainly two years ago.

Paul Merson may well be proved right and Newcastle United will lose on Saturday.

However, the last three seasons have seen Man City lose one in eight of their home Premier League games (7 of 57), so it isn’t impossible that Eddie Howe’s side could repeat what the likes of Brentford and Crystal Palace have done at the Etihad.

Pep Guardiola not happy having to play such a tough game so quickly after Wednesday night’s Super Cup victory in Athens.

Whilst Newcastle United a full week to prepare and looking full of goal threat last weekend when hammering Villa.

I think pretty much every Newcastle fan would take a draw if offered now BUT just maybe, this could be the moment for a massive statement victory from Eddie Howe’s team.

The biggest compliment for the NUFC Head Coach and his players, is that whilst it would still be a surprise if Man City lost at home, it wouldn’t be a massive shock if Newcastle went there and won.

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