Newcastle have been dealt a blow as they prepare to face Leicester City on Saturday, with Salomon Rondon being ruled out through injury. The Magpies earned a hard fought point against Crystal Palace last weekend, while Leicester City came on top against Huddersfield Town.
With Rafael Benitez’s side struggling for an attacking threat so far this season, the news of Rondon’s injury will be a huge blow. In the absence of the Venezuelan, Newcastle are likely to turn to Joselu, who has two goals so far this season. Leicester City have been dealt an injury blow of their own, with Demarai Gray set to miss up to five weeks with an ankle injury.
It remains to be seen whether Rafael Benitez will keep faith with Ayoze Perez, after the Spaniards recent run of poor form. Yoshinori Muto, a summer signing from German club Mainz, is the ideal replacement for Perez. If the Japanese international is selected from the start, it will be his first real opportunity to show the Newcastle manager and fans just what he can bring to the side. Unfortunately for Newcastle, Perez has looked off the pace so far this campaign, taking the 25 year old out of the firing line, might just do him the world of good.
A key battle in this game will be in midfield, with two influential Englishmen, James Maddison and Jonjo Shelvey. Both are so important, Maddison has hit the ground running for Leicester so far this season, with some impressive displays. Jonjo Shelvey has been one of Newcastle’s key men since he arrived at the club. Newcastle fans will be hoping Shelvey can have more influence than his counterpart on Saturday.
Newcastle have a new centre back pairing this season, with summer signing Federico Fernandez partnering captain, Jamaal Lascelles. A partnership that his impressed so far this season. Both players will have to be on top form to nullify the threat of Jamie Vardy and Kelechi Iheanacho.
This is starting to feel like a must win game for Newcastle, especially with an away trip to Manchester United to follow. Benitez may have to freshen things up to breath new life into this Newcastle side. The Magpies looked lost for ideas against at times against Crystal Palace, Mike Ashley’s lack of investment is really starting to show.
Another tough game for Newcastle, if Jonjo Shelvey and Mo Diame win the midfield battle, Newcastle have every chance of picking up their first three points of the season. Despite Rondon’s injury, I think Newcastle will just edge this one, I’m going for a 2-1 win for Newcastle.