Newcastle vs Arsenal | Latest Team News | Expected Line-Up’s | Predicted Score
Arsenal take on Newcastle United at St James’ Park this afternoon. Here is a preview with team news, line-ups and predicted score
Arsenal will put their Europa League exploits to one side when we head to St James’ Park to take on Newcastle United this afternoon.
We booked a date with Atletico Madrid in the semi-finals of the Europa League with a 6-3 aggregate victory over CSKA Moscow on Thursday night but the focus must switch back to league matters today.
Any hopes of finishing in the top four are long gone as we sit sixth in the Premier League table and 13 points adrift of fourth-placed Tottenham but we could yet pip Chelsea to fifth place.
The Blues came from behind to beat Southampton yesterday but we could close the gap on our London rivals to 3 points with a win at Newcastle this afternoon while it would also extend our lead over Burnley to 5 points.
However, we’ll face a Newcastle side that currently sit 10th in the division on 38 points after winning their last three games so they have virtually secured their top flight status for another year.
Aaron Ramsey is unlikely to be risked after suffering a deep cut in his leg against CKSA Moscow in midweek while Jack Wilshere is also expected to be rested.
Granit Xhaka missed the trip to Russia through illness but he should return to midfield while Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is set for a recall up front after being ineligible in Europe.
David Ospina is out with an ankle injury and Henrikh Mkhitaryan remains out with a knee problem but Wenger may rest some of his key men with Sead Kolasinac, Alex Iwobi and Calum Chambers among those pushing for recalls.
Islam Slimani is set to start up front after making his belated debut off the bench two weeks ago but Rafa Benitez has no other injury concerns.
Newcastle 1-2 Arsenal: We have an excellent record against Newcastle having won each of our last 10 meetings against the north-east giants but that record could be in real danger today. We have been woeful away from home all season and have little left to play for in the league so the motivation might not be there this afternoon. Thankfully, Newcastle are also playing for nothing more than pride now and I hope we’ll still have enough quality to edge it 2-1.
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