“I Dread To Think What The Score Will Be” – Paul Merson Predicts Newcastle vs Man Utd

By on January 1, 2019

paul-merson

Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson has offered his predicted score ahead of Manchester United’s clash with Newcastle and is backing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to continue his fine start as caretaker manager.

The Norwegian has enjoyed comprehensive victories over Cardiff City, Huddersfield Town and most recently Bournemouth since being put in temporary charge of Man Utd following Jose Mourinho’s departure last month.

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Solskjaer has certainly lifted the mood around Old Trafford and he’s given the likes of Paul Pogba, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial a renewed level of freedom they weren’t afforded under the previous regime.

Three consecutive wins have seen United close the gap on fifth placed Arsenal to just three points but with Chelsea a further five points adrift, the Manchester giants still have a lot of work to do in order to break in to the top four.

Next up is a trip to the north-west and Merson feels Newcastle are likely to put 10 men behind the ball to play for a 0-0 but he ‘dreads to think what the score will be” if the hosts open the game up against the pace of the Man Utd attack.

The Sky Sports pundit feels a rejuvenated United side will cause Newcastle all sorts of problems and is backing Solskjaer to lead them to another 3-1 victory at St James’ Park on Wednesday.

Writing in his Sky Sports column, Merson said:

Newcastle vs Manchester United – January 2nd

We’re watching Manchester United again. I don’t think they were that fussed before. To turn it on like they do now, Paul Pogba’s scoring goals in the six-yard box – I’ve not seen him in there since the start of the season. Is the manager saying don’t do that? Jose Mourinho’s one of the best managers in the world, surely you don’t tell a player not to play.

They’ve got freedom, Nemanja Matic has passed the ball forward more times in the last three games than I’ve seen him do even when he was at Chelsea. Everyone’s willing to make runs without the ball and it’s refreshing.

Newcastle will put 10 behind the ball, it’s as simple as that, they’ll try to play for a 0-0 and a set play. If they open the game up, I dread to think what the score will be.

Bournemouth played high against United, but Cardiff sat back and they still played great football – they’ve got runners and when you do that, it’s a threat and they’ve got major pace.

MERSE SAYS: 1-3

We’ll have to wait and see whether Merson’s prediction proves to be accurate but it would be an excellent start to life as Man Utd boss if Solskjaer could make it fours wins on the bounce and it would keep the pressure on the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea.

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