Check out our analysis, team news, line-ups and see our prediction for this match.
Before preparing to renew hostilities in the Premier League, Newcastle United Horns with lock Norwich City in a friendly encounter on Saturday afternoon.
Steve BruceThe team suffered a 1-0 loss to Burnley in their last exhibition game, while Norwich’s 100 percent preseason record continued with a 5-0 home win against Gillingham.
Prediction for this match
Playing behind closed doors in Premier League stadiums will hopefully be a thing of the past, but Newcastle and Burnley were the newest teams to fight in such circumstances and the Clarets didn’t need the Turf Moor believers to beat the Magpies.
After a goalless 45 and an expected string of substitutions for the second half, Burnley launched a quick attack in the 70th minute that turned in Erik Pieters feeding Jay Rodriguez push it home cool Mark Gillespie, and Newcastle had no answer to the Englishman’s efforts.
A three-game undefeated preseason run is now over – and the Magpies also started their summer season with a 1-0 defeat in York City – but Bruce’s men can take confidence from victories over Doncaster Rovers and Burton Albion earlier on their long-awaited return to St. James’ Park.
While St. James’ Park believers no doubt want their team to produce the goods on the field, off-field transfer activities are the cause of concern right now, particularly given the acquisitions of three academy prospects that are Newcastle’s only additions to date.
Although a cluster of coronavirus cases threatened to bring Norwich’s preparations to failure – with games against Coventry City and Sheffield United being canceled – Daniel FarkeThe team returned Tuesday with a five-star performance against Gillingham.
Adam Idah found the back of the net twice Jacob Sorensen, Lukas Rupp and newcomer Pierre Lees-Melou also a routine success for the Canaries, who are now four to four in a confidence-inspiring preparation phase.
Victories over King’s Lynn Town, Lincoln City and Huddersfield Town preceded Norwich’s 5-0 win over Gillingham, and Farke’s side have done their pre-season efforts, scoring 11 goals and just one before their last exhibition game at St James’ Park Conceded goal.
A 10,000-strong crowd on Carrow Road saw their side win mid-week and the Canaries beat Newcastle 3-1 Teemu Pukkis hat trick back in August 2019, but the last encounter at St James’ Park in February 2020 ended goalless.
See all team news
Newcastle Infirmary is showing no signs of exhaustion anytime soon, but Bruce was able to at least give a positive update Miguel Almironwho is now back in training and could play a role here.
Martin Dubravka and Karl DarlowBruce’s absences continue to limit Bruce’s options in goal while Callum Wilson and Allan Saint-Maximin may have a chance to make an appearance but no risks are taken with the attacking duo prior to their Premier League opener with West Ham United.
Jonjo Shelvey made his comeback against Burnley mid-week, however Paul DummettHis calf injury will likely incapacitate him for a few more weeks.
In the meantime, Norwich boss Farke confirmed that seven players were absent from the Gillingham friendly because of the coronavirus, with star striker Pukki and captain Grant Hanley among the notable absentee.
Sorensen’s goal during the night came after his end of self-isolation Angus Gunn also returned from quarantine to take over from Tim Krul for the second 45 minutes.
Ex-striker from Werder Bremen Milot Rashica was nowhere to be seen against Gillingham, however Kenny McLean managed to play for half an hour as he accelerated his recovery from a knee injury.
Newcastle United possible starting line-up:
Lumberjack; Krafth, Fernandez, Lascelles, Clark, Lewis; Hayden, Shelvey, S. Longstaff; Fraser, Joelinton
Norwich City possible starting line-up:
Krul; Aarons, Zimmermann, Gibson, Giannoulis; Rupp, Gilmour, Lees-Melou; Dowell, Idah, Cantwell
Probability: Newcastle United 1-1 Norwich City
Norwich pushed its coronavirus problems aside to issue a letter of intent against Gillingham, but a Newcastle squad – albeit with selection concerns of their own – represents a much tougher test.
The Canaries have some exciting young talent in their ranks and have momentum on their side from their pre-season results, but we still expect Bruce’s men to get a draw before the Premier League season begins.