Rafa Benitez has just named his starting line-up for tonight’s important game against Nottingham Forest at St. James’ Park.
With Brighton’s game at home to Cardiff City being called off because of thick fog on the south coast Newcastle will go back to top of the league with a win tonight.
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) December 30, 2016
Rafa has brought in DeAndre Yedlin for Vurnon Anita, Christian Atsu for Yoan Gouffran and Ayoze Perez for Mo Diame.
We guessed Yedlin and Atsu would come in, but we thought Rafa would start Mo tonight before he left for the African Cup of Nations.
It would be a very good time for Ayoze Perez to have a good game and get on the score-sheet for us – and the same goes for Atsu.
But we need to be able to score tonight after being goalless against the Owls.
Here’s what Rafa has said in the lead up to this game about the tough Championship:
“I’m really pleased with the away form.” “When a team is doing so well away, if you are also as good at home you would be ten points clear.”
“We know that it’s a difficult competition.” “We know it’s a difficult league and teams are coming to our stadium and trying to work very hard in defence and be very compact, very narrow and play on the counter-attack.”
“It’s something we have seen during the whole season and we need to understand how to play these games.” “If you can not win, don’t give them any hope that they can score and then at least you will have a draw.”
“It’s something that still we have to learn.” “Sometimes, when you say that they come and they press very high, to surprise you, but normally they will be well organised in defence.”
“And they will try to play counter-attack, so we will have to deal with that and do it in a better way than we did the other day because we know that we were not quick enough moving the ball.”
“We know that we didn’t create too much; we had the chances at the beginning and after that we were defending counter-attacks, so we have to manage better these kind of games.”
Most fans expect a win tonight that would take us back to the top of the Championship.