Mere days after unsurprisingly destroying Aston Villa on their own turf, Newcastle will return home for another Premier League game this time played at the home confines of St. James’ Park in Tyneside as the Magpies will host recently-promoted Luton Town, both coming off midweek victories.
Newcastle bagged three points thanks to a solid, dominant, commanding 3-1 trouncing of the Villans at Villa Park while Luton Town secured their biggest Premier League victory to date, a 4-0 thrashing of Brighton & Hove Albion, as ridiculous as that sounds.
Fabian Schar was the man against Villa scoring a brace while Miggy was the little tiny rascal crossing a ball that ended at the bottom of Unai Emery’s team’s goal on a deflected bounce of their own. The dub marked the third consecutive away win across all competitions by Newcastle, although the always-on-the-road run through multiple FA Cup rounds of late helped in building that strong record.
That said, it’s also fair to say that nothing has really changed for Newcastle. The lads are still a struggling Premier League side in the domestic league, and it’s going to be mad impossible for them to get another top-4 finish this season after finishing there and getting Champions League football following their extraordinary 2022-23 campaign. Here’s hoping they are at least sitting in some Europa League or Europa Conference League-bound place come May!
By beating Brighton last midweek, Luton got their largest Premier League win ever and most importantly left the relegation zone for the first time all year long. They now hold a one-point lead over 18th-placed Everton, with an unbeaten streak of five matches in all competitions that NUFC will try to put to an end as early as the ball gets rolling on Saturday.
Newcastle might find themselves without Alexander Isak and Callum Wilson and thus without a natural striker against Luton—pencil in either Miguel Almiron or Anthony Gordon up front, as there are simply no other options to lead the middle of the forward line. On top of that, Howe won’t be able to count on a plethora of players such as Matt Targett, Elliot Anderson, Joe Willock, Nick Pope, and the suspended Sandro Tonali, although Harvey Barnes might make his return (at least/even if only as a reserve) following a months-long absence.
Here are some of Tindall’s Wisdom Nuggets, courtesy of NUFC.co.uk
On Eddie Howe’s absence...
“He is feeling a little bit under the weather - he sent me out to you guys today. I expect him to be on the touchline tomorrow.”
On Isak’s fitness...
“Alex has improved. He will be one we have to assess today, take the advice from the medical team.
“He has a chance of making the game tomorrow.”
On the Magpies’ other fitness concerns...
“A couple of lads are getting closer. We will assess the squad today and see where everyone is.
“The injury situation is certainly getting better. Harvey (Barnes) and Callum (Wilson) are probably a little ahead of Joe (Willock).”
On Tuesday’s win at Villa Park...
“It was really important - we knew we needed to get back on track and we had a good result at Fulham in the FA Cup.
“To go there and perform the way we did was great for us and it gives us confidence going into the game this weekend.”
On Newcastle’s recent form...
“We were back to our old self. We have had a lot more contact time on the training pitch with the players and I think that has shown in our last two performances.
“We have come off the back of a difficult schedule. The last two results have given us a lot of confidence and hopefully, we can build on that. The mood has been great.”
“You have to give Luton a lot of credit - since they played us, they have been on a really good run, they have shown they are a hard team to play against. They are a dangerous team.
“Credit to Luton for the way they have been performing, but our main focus is on Luton and we want to go out there and get the best result.”
On teenage midfielder Lewis Miley, who penned a new long-term deal with the club this week...
“Lewis Miley is an exceptional talent. To do what he has done this season at 17 years old is a great achievement for him. We are delighted he has signed a long-term contract.”
- Date: Saturday, Feb. 3rd
- Kick-off: 15:00 BST / 10:00 EST
- Location: St James’ Park, Newcastle (England)