Hello strangers! I trust we are all keeping well? It’s been quite a while since I’ve spoken to you all…
However I see not a lot has changed. Alan Pardew is, against all odds, still in the managerial hotseat, we’re still struggling as a team and we’ve still yet to record a win in the league this season.
United will be aiming to change the last part of that statement this afternoon when newly-promoted Leicester City visit St James’ Park. It’s an interesting one for me personally as I live near Leicester these days and married into a family of which half were born in Leicestershire, so for me today the banter stakes are high.
For Newcastle, the stakes are even higher. Results may have been poor but I cling onto the fact that we’ve salvaged recent draws against Hull and Swansea when we could have hidden and got beat. Again. Although a large part of avoiding defeat has been down to the return of Papiss Cisse who will be hoping to add to his tally of four league goals this season.
Emmanuel Riviere is doubtful as reported yesterday although the other injury concerns, namely Tim Krul, Daryl Janmaat and Paul Dummett, should be fit to feature. French pair Moussa Sissoko and Remy Cabella returned from international duty with France with no problems while Cheik Tiote and Papiss Cisse survived long-haul international trips unscathed which means that Davide Santon and Siem De Jong remain our only senior first-team absentees.
Matt Upson and Zoumana Bakayogo are the only injuries that former United caretaker boss Nigel Pearson has to contend with.
We haven’t had much of a recent history against the Foxes with our last meetings coming from when we faced each other in the Championship where United secured a 1-0 victory at St James’ Park while only a draw could be mustered against 10-men at the Walkers Stadium.
Historically though we do have the upper hand, especially at home where the 54 games played at St James’ Park have yielded 36 victories for United with Leicester returning home South with victory on just seven occasions.
Overall 108 games have been played to date with Newcastle winning 46, Leicester winning 37 with 25 stalemates thrown in for good measure.
Stats and facts:
The Magpies are the only side yet to score first in a Premier League game this season.
Out of the 17 ever-present Premier League sides in 2014, Newcastle have earned the fewest points (20), scored the fewest goals (21) and conceded the most (49).
Leicester have only found the net once in their three league matches away from home this season.
However they are the second-most efficient scoring team in the Premier League, with 11 of their 62 shots resulting in a goal (18%). Chelsea lead the way with 20 goals from 101 shots (20%).
It’s actually starting to get desperate and we’re almost at the point where we’ve gone beyond a bad start and look to be settling into a battle to get away from the bottom of the table. That will get harder and harder unless we start picking up points and even a win today would only see us potentially move up one place.
But we do need that win and the longer it takes to come the harder it will be to achieve. Haven’t we waited long enough for one now?
Howay the lads!
Date: Saturday, 18th, October
Venue: St James’ Park