26 December 2019 live
Manchester United vs Newcastle
After a shocking 2-0 loss to Watford last weekend, Manchester United will be playing at home against Newcastle United this Wednesday. Ole Gunnar was shocked with the result of United’s last game after a woeful performance by his boys. Jesse Lingard threw away United’s biggest chance in the game – tipping over the goal post when around the keeper would do. Then an error from De Gea who let the ball slip through his fingers saw United fall behind. A penalty against United left Troy Deeney with his fourth penalty against the club. In short, it was nothing short of a disaster for United – pun intended.
Ole Gunnar will have to win against Newcastle to keep the criticism at bay. United has had a somewhat mixed performance. Beating the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea, and Tottenham but losing to weaker sides likes the Bournemouth. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United side have struggled to consistently score goals when Anthony Martial or Marcus Rashford are not at their best after doing away with Lukaku – who has been banging in goals from all corners of the field in Italy.
United will seek retribution on the field though their recent form hasn’t been too bad (LDWW). They had 1.5 goals per game before meeting Watford. It has now dropped to 1.4 gpg although, their average ball possession improved from 52.6% to 53%.
United’s shots per game improved from 14.6 to 14.7. This tells us United had their chances but failed to convert. Ole’s side might be able to get a goal against Newcastle based on the stats and knowing they failed to score in their last match.
False 9 Anthony Martial will be leading the attack and with the return of Paul Pogba, United will likely create a flurry of chances. Newcastle is coming off a 1-0 victory against 12th place Crystal Palace. They sit 9th with equal points as Manchester United who are 8th placed. So far, they have recorded only one loss in their last 4 games (WLWW).
Having 1 goal per game, Newcastle has scored 18 goals in 18 premiere league appearances. An impressive record noting the club can only boast of an average ball possession of 39.3% – one of the lowest in the league.
The last time both sides met was in October. That match ended 1-0 in favor of Newcastle. The Magpies were still able to beat United despite having only 31% ball possession. Matty Longstaff’s 72’ goal separated both sides at full-time. Eric Baily is likely to return to the bench against Newcastle after missing 28 matches due to a knee surgery. while Newcastle’s Matt Ritchie remains out with an ankle injury.
This Boxing day match will be really exciting as both clubs will be fighting for 6th place. The match will be officiated by referee Kevin Friend and kicks-off at 5:30 UK Time.
What time is kick off?
The match begins at 18:30.