Premier League Preview: Newcastle United vs. Manchester City
- City have won last 12 games vs. Newcastle
- City lead scoring 23-1 in last 6 games
- Newcastle only lost 1 of last 6 at home
Newcastle United host Manchester City at St James’ Park on Tuesday (Watch live, 2:45 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via Live Extra) with the Magpies looking to secure back-to-back wins for the first time this season.
Rafael Benitez tasted victory for the first-time in five games as Newcastle manager as they beat Swansea City 3-0 last Saturday. That win significantly boosted Newcastle’s survival hopes and even they can somehow beat red-hot Manchester City then they will climb out of the relegation zone on goal difference.
City is firing on all cylinders after reaching the UEFA Champions League semifinal, as Sergio Aguero’s hat trick and a sublime display from Kevin de Bruyne ripped apart Chelsea last weekend.
In team news Newcastle is still without defenders Fabricio Coloccini and Daryl Janmaat, while both Raheem Sterling and Vincent Kompany return for third-placed Man City.
What they’re saying
Moussa Sissoko on the belief at Newcastle: “The belief is returning. We can stay up. If we beat City we’ll be level on points with Norwich. It won’t be easy, especially against City, but we have to give everything. We need to believe because we’re good enough to do it. We’ve beaten big teams before. We’ve beaten Liverpool and Tottenham already this season. Manchester City are one of England’s best sides but we’re in front of our own fans and we’ll give everything.”
Manuel Pellegrini on the Guardiola distraction: “At the start of February there was news about the change of the manager, about players who will not continue here next season, about a lot of things that involved the minds of all the players... It’s not easy for the players when you read in newspapers all things that will happen next season -- all the players who will go out, all the players that will come in. It’s not easy for the players to focus their mind.”
With City flying high but keeping one eye on the UCL semifinal first leg against Real Madrid next week, Pellegrini’s men may be distracted. I see this being a draw. 1-1.