Brighton is no team to ignore after they downed Arsenal in dominating fashion, 3-0, this past weekend. Newcastle United on the other hand struggled in a 2-2 draw against Leeds United.
With these two sides going up against one another on Thursday, May 18 as the season comes to a close, both sides are playing for a lot.
Going into Thursday’s game Newcastle is currently sitting in third place in the Premier League table with 66 points. The only downside is that the Magpies are tied with Manchester United in fourth place, while Tottenham sits just behind the two with 65 points.
The top five truly has been competitive all season long and with Newcastle down to their last three games of the season, every point is going to matter to retain the ability to play in the Champions League next season.
But, those last three games are challenging no matter how you look at the opponents the Magpies will be taking on.
Brighton is no team to doubt after beating second-place Arsenal and taking down Man United the week prior. The only hiccup on the road was a 5-1 loss to Everton, who are struggling to stay outside the bottom three of the table to avoid relegation.
However, even with that outlier against Everton, the two wins against Man United and Arsenal cannot be ignored. The win against Arsenal shot them up to sixth on the league table.
The victory against Man United was a close one, 1-0, where the winning goal was scored via a penalty kick in stoppage time. While it was a nail-biter, both squads battled all game long.
Brighton can certainly score well as they’ve recorded 66 goals on the year, more than both Newcastle and Manchester United.
Offensive efficiency is definitely something Brighton does not struggle with, and against Newcastle, those positive characteristics will have to be met swiftly by the Magpie defense.
Well, can the Magpies bounce back and pull off a win against this impressive squad?
To put it simply, yes.
They’ve been able to do just about anything this season. Ever since August, they’ve been projected to be a sub-par middle-of-the-table team, with some expectations to be just slightly in the single digit-rankings.
With not much left in the season, Newcastle needs five points to secure a spot in the Champions League next year and a win against Brighton would allow them to tie the final two contests to clinch that spot.
The only concern has been the off-and-on consistency of Newcastle’s offense which hits a wall at times.
If we know one thing about Manager Eddie Howe’s team, they do not back down from a challenge.
A solid bet would be a 2-0 victory or a 2-1 victory for the Magpies, as both sides have shown very good offensive and defensive capabilities that may counteract one another.
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The two sides will be taking on one another this coming Thursday with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m. GMT