Newcastle have a chance to climb back into third place with a result this afternoon at Crystal Palace. Manchester United are just 1 point above with a difficult trip to Emirates looming on Sunday.
Eddie Howe’s team selection is a point of intrigue heading into the match. Bruno Guimaraes has reportedly recovered enough from his ankle injury to make the traveling squad. Allan Saint-Maximin and Alexander Isak will also be itching to start.
I suspect Howe will not risk Bruno for the full 90 minutes. Allan Saint-Maximin hasn’t started in the league since August and will be motivated to impress should he get the nod. I suspect he will with Joelinton moving to the midfield.
This is the team I predict Howe to name this evening with Saint-Maximin in for Guimaraes. The bench would be a strong one with Bruno and Alex available for cameos.
The injury situation looks a lot better if Guimaraes is fit. Both Jonjo Shelvey and Matt Targett are a few weeks away but making progress. Elliot Anderson has returned to training with a chance to make the bench today.
Crystal Palace are in decent shape on the injury front though will be missing starting center-back Joachim Anderson with a calf injury. We could see either James Tompkins or the young American Chris Richards in for the Dane.
Emil Krafth (knee), Jonjo Shelvey (calf), Matt Targett (heel), Elliot Anderson (calf – fitness test), Bruno Guimaraes (ankle – fitness test)
Crystal Palace Injuries
Joachim Andersen (calf), James McArthur (groin), Nathan Ferguson (undisclosed)
Our poll shows a fanbase brimming with confidence once again. Around 94% expect Newcastle to get something from this match with over 2 in 3 voters predicting all three points.
This is another tricky match against Jekyll and Hyde Palace. A lot could depend on which one shows up. Howe will have the lads primed and ready. Hopefully, three points and another clean sheet are on the way.