This is getting close to a must-win game for Steve McClaren after a winless start that, after threatening to show signs of improvement following a draw with Chelsea where they were slightly unfortunate not to take all three points and then taking the lead at Man City, lurched to a new low as Sergio Aguero scored five times in 20 minutes.
They’ve won just one of their last 10 at St James’ and that is definitely a cause for concern but the defeat to Watford is the only truly bad result in that run as they’ve faced a number of elite teams. They’ve scored in 19 of their last 22 home games and have won half their last 10 at home against bottom-half teams (W5-D3-L2). The frustration of the Gallowgate End may have started to spread to the field but the good news is that Norwich are yet to keep a clean sheet this season and the Toon should have opportunities here.
However, the only time Norwich have failed to score this season was when they were reduced to 10 men in the first half at Southampton. With goals going in at both ends six of the Canaries eight matches have had at least three goals and half have had four or more. Furthermore, they’ve scored in 15 of their last 16 away matches in all competitions. All in all we’ve got two poor defences and should see some goals in this game, with Over 2.5 Goals an excellent price at 19/20.
They might been playing like it so far but in terms of potential Newcastle are not the worst team in the league. With a couple of weeks to steady the ship McClaren will hope to get the best out of his side, and he can at least be buoyed by the improvements in attack over the last couple of games as Aleksandar Mitrovic has returned from suspension and been paired with the exciting Ayoze Perez. Moreover, since 2010/11, bottom-six teams have played 91 home games against promoted sides and won 45 times (49%). We therefore have to look at Newcastle’s price of 2.5 as decent value and the win with both teams to score is definitely an option here at 4.8.
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