Newcastle V Tottenham Preview : Spurs won't have forgotten that 5-1...
Event Venue: St James' Park, Kick off: 13:30. Sky Sports.See Stats
Spurs have been the best team in England over the course of the last two years record wise, but they have no trophies to show for it. Newcastle have returned to the top-flight after spending a year in the Championship and this time, they have Rafa Benitez behind them. Both sides have endured difficult summers in the transfer market and they know they need reinforcements in order to meet their ambitions. Will Newcastle ride the momentum of winning the Championship, or will Spurs continue to get better and better?
Newcastle were a sinking ship when Rafa Benitez got ahold of them. Mike Ashley refused to spend big money for many years. Then, when he finally did, Steve McClaren woefully misspent it and dragged them towards the relegation zone. Benitez swooped in at the end of the season and somehow nearly saved the Magpies, and on their final day in the league, they spanked Spurs 5-1. Now, Newcastle are back and much more in the mould of Benitez and his previous sides - which can only be a good thing. They still need more players, but additions like Javier Manquillo, Jacob Murphy, Christian Atsu and Florian Lejeune have certainly strengthened the ranks, but there is a lot of pressure on Aleksander Mitrovic and Dwight Gayle to fire the club to safety. Benitez is the X-factor that Newcastle have been missing for a longtime, and because of him they should survive.
Don't stand still
Spurs have been an excellent team to watch for the past two years and, basically, since Mauricio Pochettino took over. The combination of Dele Alli and Harry Kane is the obvious cornerstone of the side and while those two men are at the club, they shall always be in the mix for the top four. However, the supporting cast is made up of very skilful and athletic players that fit a system perfectly. For instance, Kieran Tripper and Danny Rose and quick, aggressive full-backs who love to get forward. Victor Wanyama and Moussa Dembele are literal brick walls in front of the back four and Christian Eriksen is the majestic playmaker that brings it all together. The team is so wonderfully gelled, but the fact they haven't signed anyone this season is concerning if they want to progress.
Newcastle at home, with the roar of St James' behind them look a good bet here. Spurs are without both Kieran Tripper and Danny Rose on the flanks, but after dispatching Juventus in a friendly last weekend they will surely have too much for a Newcastle side that still very much resembles the side that won the Championship. Spurs to get the victory, but not an easy one.
- Newcastle won the Championship last season to return to the Premier League at the first time of asking
- Spurs have had the best record in the Premier League over the past two seasons
- Newcastle beat Spurs 5-1 in the last Premier League game they had
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