Thursday’s Premier League action sees two sides from either end of the Premier League standings face off as relegation-battling Everton trade tackles with in-form Newcastle United at Goodison Park.
Sean Dyche’s side earned what could prove to be a valuable point with a goalless draw against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park, seeing out the latter stages with ten men after Mason Holgate was dismissed for a second bookable offence.
The Toffees have won just one of their last nine league games (D4, L4), leaving them in 18th place in the Premier League, level on points with Leicester City and one behind Leeds United in a tense relegation dogfight.
Despite their worrying winless run, Dyche will ask his side to replicate their defensive resilience when they come up against the free-scoring Magpies on home turf.
Newcastle recaptured their form in front of goal in the 6-1 thrashing of fellow top-four hopefuls Tottenham Hotspur, racing to a five-goal lead in the first 21 minutes.
Eddie Howe’s rampant Magpies have strengthened their grip on a top-four place, and the English manager will ask for more of the same from his side against the struggling Blues.
Everton are winless in their last five games (D3, L2), and the Toffees are unlikely to halt that poor run of form against a Newcastle side they have beaten just once in their last six meetings (D1, L4) – although that victory came in a 1-0 success in this exact fixture last season.
While their form in midweek fixtures has not been the best, Everton are unbeaten in their last eight league games played on Thursday (W4, D4).
Dyche also seems to have Howe’s number, having won six of his nine league meetings with the Newcastle manager (L3). He will need to whip out his winning formula if his side are to come away with a positive result on Thursday.
Howe would have been pleased with his side’s swift and emphatic response to their previous 3-0 humbling against Aston Villa and will be keen to continue in the same vein against an Everton side the Magpies have beaten in four of their last five league meetings (L1).
However, Goodison Park has not been a happy hunting ground for Newcastle, who have won just one of their last ten league games at Everton (D3, L6).
The Tyneside club will also be keen to avoid posting consecutive defeats on the road for the first time since March/April last year, having lost to Villa last time out.
Premier League Form
Newcastle United: WLWWW
Everton vs Newcastle United Potential Line-ups
Everton (4-2-3-1): Jordan Pickford; Vitaly Mykolenko, James Tarkowski, Michael Keane, Ben Godfrey; Idrissa Gueye, James Garner; Dwight McNeil, Alex Iwobi, Demarai Gray; Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
Newcastle United (4-3-3): Nick Pope; Dan Burn, Sven Botman, Jamaal Lascelles, Kieran Trippier; Joe Willock, Bruno Guimaraes, Sean Longstaff; Joelinton, Alexander Isak, Jacob Murphy.
We Say: Everton 1-3 Newcastle United
Newcastle have conceded in each of their last six games on the road, and an Everton side desperate for points and results should look to capitalise on the Magpies’ frailties away from home.
However, Howe’s side should have no problems building on their previous morale-boosting success to pick up another three points.
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