We are almost ready to embark on another season with Newcastle, and it’s a big step up from a year ago when we played Fulham at Craven Cottage last August in the Championship and lost 1-0.
That was followed eight days later by a 2-1 home defeat against Huddersfield, and the sky had fallen in on Newcastle.
But Rafa steadied the ship, and we won our next six games and went on to win the Championship!
This season we hope to have some points on the board after our first two league games.
We play Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday in what will be a sold-out and magnificent St. James’ Park on Sunday afternoon, and we will do very well to get a point from that game.
Having looked at the Newcastle teams, Rafa has played in the final two friendlies we think this is the team he will start on Sunday in a game that will be televised live around the world.
Manquillo Lejeune Clark Dummett
Hayden Shelvey (c)
Ritchie Perez Atsu
That is assuming Dwight Gayle is fit from his troubling hamstring which kept him out of the last two friendlies.
If Dwight cannot make it, then he will be replaced by Aleksandar Mitrovic as the up front striker.
We expect new signings Florian Lejeune and Javier Manquillo to make their debuts for Newcastle and we have to think Rafa thought he would have maybe five new players making their debuts for the club on Sunday.
Rafa does hold his press conference today for the game, so we’ll look forward to seeing what he has to say – we expect him to be all business – as usual.
Hey – we’re back in the big time again!
Now to the central question – what is your team for Sunday?