Lineup prediction: Two newcomers start for Newcastle vs. West Ham

Steve Bruce, Manager of Newcastle United. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Steve Bruce, Manager of Newcastle United. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images) /

Newcastle United will open the 2020-21 Premier League campaign in London against West Ham.

Three days is all that separates Newcastle United from Premier League action. The Magpies will be in London to face West Ham in their season opener, and fans will be hoping for three points to start the new campaign.

Newcastle United supporters are pleased to see some quality players with Premier League experience walk through the doors, but West Ham fans will be hoping some of the Magpies’ new faces stay on the bench.

Some new signings will be on the bench for this clash, but one particular player who has seven goals against the Hammers will be in the lineup.

Predicted Lineup

Due to Martin Dubravka being sidelined for the next six weeks, Steve Bruce must decide between Karl Darlow and new boy Mark Gillespie, but Darlow’s top flight experience will get him the start.

Ahead of him on the back line three regular starters – Javier Manquillo, Federico Fernandez, and Jamaal Lascelles – will take their places, but who will start at left-back?

Fans will want to see Jamal Lewis make his debut, but due to joining in the middle of the week his debut should be pushed to next weekend. That being said, Emil Krafth will get the nod on the left flank, especially since DeAndre Yedlin is one of those players who could be leaving soon.

The two central midfielders in this clash will be last season’s top scorer Jonjo Shelvey and new signing Jeff Hendrick. The former Burnley man is more attack-minded than Isaac Hayden, and Bruce will want to see what this duo is capable of against another mid-table team early in the season.

Entering the final third, the trio behind the lone striker will catch the most attention on Saturday, primarily to see if Ryan Fraser starts. Unfortunately, Fraser has not been in action for a couple of months and needs to get his fitness level back up before eventually becoming a regular starter.

The trio on Saturday will consist of Miguel Almiron in the number ten role, Allan Saint-Maximin out wide, and Matt Ritchie, who enjoyed great form in Project Restart, on the opposite wing.

Joelinton is another option for Bruce to play out wide, but he missed the majority of preseason, so Ritchie is the way to go. It is worth saying, though, that Jacob Murphy has impressed in preseason. It would not be a major surprise if he starts.

Last, but certainly not least, Callum Wilson will be the main man leading the front line for Newcastle United. The Magpies have been desperately seeking a lethal finisher in front of goal, and fans will be hoping to see Wilson score more goals against West Ham in his debut.


Formation: 4-2-3-1

Lineup: Darlow; Manquillo, Fernandez, Lascelles, Krafth; Hendrick, Shelvey; Ritchie, Almiron, Saint-Maximin; Wilson

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