This is the team we predict Steve Bruce will pick for Sunday’s match against Brighton. It’s the same team and formation that picked up the 2-0 win at West Ham last weekend.
Bruce has a few tough decisions to make but he’ll probably stick with the same side as the one from Saturday. He made 10 changes for the Carabao Cup win against Blackburn.
While a few Magpies impressed on Tuesday, it may not be enough to unseat anyone from the season opener. Leaving out Miguel Almiron is the toughest choice for Bruce. Andy Carroll was immense against the Hammers and is likely to get another start.
Ryan Fraser was outstanding on Tuesday as well but is still regaining full fitness so he’s any easier choice to leave as an impact substitute. Jeff Hendrick put in a sterling display on his debut so to drop him would be harsh.
For the time being, Bruce has plenty of options in attack, which is a good problem to have. He can easily bring on either Miguel Almiron or Ryan Fraser should the team need a change.
Mark Gillespie did himself no harm after his excellent debut on Tuesday. The thought may have crept into Bruce’s mind to hand the Geordie his Premier League debut.
But that thought will have been a fleeting one as Karl Darlow has just signed a new deal and had a clean sheet against West Ham. Also, there’s a quick turnaround for the Carabao Cup. So Mark will get his next start on Wednesday at Morecambe.
In fact, with the Morecambe game coming just three days after Brighton, Bruce’s decision to keep Miggy and Fraser on the bench is an easier one.
The rest of the team is a no-brainer for the head coach. Hopefully, we’ll see a performance similar to the one at the Hammers. A win will be the first time Newcastle have won the opening two matches since 1997.