Newcastle have had a tough start to the season so far, and it gets no easier as a resurgent Arsenal visit St James’ Park on Saturday afternoon.
Rafa Benitez’s Geordies are winless so far, and have lacked any real conviction in either penalty area. They’ve only failed to score once in the league, but they lack a proven goal scorer that will consistently trouble defences at the top end of the Premier League.
That said, Arsenal like to make hard work of these sorts of games. Neither of their back-to-back wins against West Ham and Cardiff in recent weeks have come with a clean sheet to boot, and while Newcastle have lost games against Spurs, Chelsea and Manchester City already, the Magpies have scored in all three of those games. With that in mind, both teams to score looks a banker at 4/6 with William Hill.
If you like to follow recent history, then the smart money has to be on a Gunners away victory. Ten of the last eleven Premier Leagues between Newcastle v Arsenal have ended in the favour of former manager Arsene Wenger. Meanwhile, new boss Unai Emery is developing a promising strike partnership between Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, with both scoring in their 3-2 win at Cardiff last time out, so they should have enough firepower to get past their hosts. Arsenal are as good as 10/11 (Ladbrokes) to get the three points.
If you fancy a home goal, then I’ll point you in the direction of West Brom loanee Solomon Rondon, whose physical style could ruffle a few feathers in the Arsenal backline. Rondon comes into this weekend off the back of two goals for Venezuela in midweek, and is 23/10 with Betfair to score anytime here.
We all know what Arsenal are like in slippery games like this. Newcastle have the defensive, counter-attacking approach that could well give the Gunners problems at the back, but the North Londoners should be brimming with confidence and renewed belief ahead of this one. We’ve had classics in this fixture in recent years in the form of a 4-4 draw and a 7-3 Arsenal victory, and I fancy a few goals in this one too. The Arsenal win plus both teams scoring looks like a great bet at 5/2 with BetVictor.
Premier League Treble: £10 on Arsenal, Newcastle and Crystal Palace returns a tidy £71 with William Hill.
Five reasons why I track my bet.