Newcastle United endured a mixed start to their campaign in England’s top league. After a quick start, Newcastle United flopped and their loss in form saw them sink to the lower end of the table. They managed to pause their slump and hold their form, something which saw the club moves back to a respectable position in the league. But another slump saw Newcastle slide down again. They now stand 15th on the table and have collected just 10 of their last 45 available points.
In a league where results after each match week can send a club fighting relegation to top ten, Newcastle will have to continue their fight if they wish to stay afloat this season.
On the transfer front, things have been very jittery and unplanned. After a very impressive season in the Championships that saw Newcastle return to the Premier League, Benitez demanded more signings of Premier League standard to establish the club in England’s premier competition. However, with Newcastle unable to sell their existing crop of players, Newcastle has had to deal with a stagnant squad and that has frustrated Benitez. With the January transfer window now open, Benitez will look to go through with fresh transfer dealings to help his team improve.
The Magpies have already signed Kenedy from Chelsea on loan and are looking at a few more possibilities before the transfer window slams shut. Their hitman Dwight Gayle has been unable to replicate his form from last season and that has seen Newcastle linked with a club record move for Feyenoord Rotterdam striker Nicolai Jorgensen.
As for the upcoming FA Cup fixture against Chelsea, he will be stuck with the team he has as no immediate signing has been signalled and his only new signing Kenedy ineligible to play against his parent club. Here is how he will look to set them up for the match.
Robert Elliot can be expected to stay out with Karl Darlow picked again to play in goal.
DeAndre Yedlin will be positioned in right back with Paul Dummett at left-back. 28-year old Ciaran Clark along with Jamaal Lascelles will be expected at the heart of Newcastle United defence.
A midfield quartet of Christian Atsu on the left, Matt Ritchie on the right, with Jonjo Shelvey and Mikel Merino will be expected to play for the match against Chelsea.
Ayoze Perez will be playing in behind Joselu as the two forwards for Newcastle United with Dwight Gayle likely to come off the bench.
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