A massive month in our scrap for survival: NUFC’s February fixtures & our predictions for each one

More points dropped at home on Wednesday has left the table as tight as ever and NUFC precariously close to the bottom three.  This late in the season, every game is a big one, and despite next month being a shorter one in terms of league matches, it could make all the difference come May. Here is who we come up against…

CRYSTAL PALACE (A)

Prediction: Palace 1-1 Newcastle

This Sunday sees us travel to Selhurst Park for a televised afternoon kick off, with Palace just a place above us in the table. After a dreadful start to the season they have turned things round well and look to be heading in the right direction under Roy Hodgson. They are a real threat going forward with the likes of Zaha, Benteke and former toon players Townsend and Cabaye at their disposal. Palace have lots of injuries which may help our cause but avoiding defeat is crucial here.

League position: 13th



Danger man: Wilfried Zaha

Form last six games: 8 points (9th)

 

MANCHESTER UNITED (H)

Prediction: Newcastle 1-2 Man Utd

We then return to St James’ to host Manchester United, which although we desperately need the points, in reality will be a bit of a free swing for Rafa and the lads. We can’t expect to pick anything up in this fixture realistically so anything would be a bonus. Lukaku, Sanchez, Martial and Pogba will cause us problems. The glimmer of hope is the atmosphere this fixture is sure to create, which could be helped by the fact it’s Islam Slimani’s likely return date.

League position: 2nd

Danger man: Alexis Sanchez

Form last six games: 10 points (5th)

 

BOURNEMOUTH (A)

Prediction: Bournemouth 0-1 Newcastle

Eddie Howe’s men had been in dire straits around the festive period and truly in the relegation mix. They are still currently just five points above the bottom three but in 10th and off the back of a terrific 3-0 win at Chelsea they look like they are finding form at the right time. Depending how other results go and what points we pick up against Palace and Man. Utd, we really could do with a win here but it’s a tough ask. We will be fighting for our lives in this one and I fancy us to do a job on them IF Slimani is able to start and make an immediate impact.

League position: 10th

Danger man: Callum Wilson

Form last six games: 11 points (4th)

If we did pick up four points it would leave us on 28 points from 27 games played. Really, we need to get three points from either the Palace or Bournemouth games as they are some of our ‘easier’ games left this season. If we remain as we are, picking up a point a game, it is dangerously close to the 40 point mark of just under it. It is going to go to the wire this season and winning games, rather than draws will get us out of trouble. Hopefully Slimani can fire us to safety, once fit!

(Fancy writing for us? Send any articles/ideas over to us at [email protected] & we’ll get back to you!)

About Simon Riddlesden

Lifelong Newcastle United fan and East Stand season ticket holder. Observations from a supporter who has followed NUFC during Champions League participation and through relegation, taking me from Milan to Scunthorpe.

72 thoughts on “A massive month in our scrap for survival: NUFC’s February fixtures & our predictions for each one

  1. 37-38 points has meant safety most years. A point a game. I don’t know where this mythical 40 points comes from? Maybe because it is a multiple of 10 and we think in decimals. Usually it is 38. West Ham went down with like 42-43 one year but that was an anomaly. There is usually a really **** team as well and that isn’t happening this year.

    38. Forget the mystical 40, that is from Phil “can you see my nose from space” Thompson and his pals.

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  2. And… Einstein didn’t say “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again” and The Chinese Wall is not the ONLY manmade structure you can see from space.

    So, 38 points it is then.

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  3. 37 should do it!
    Re the logo Olly – it actually held a hint of what blogs are all about. The new one just says NUFC.

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  4. When I was a kid there was this urban legend in Newcastle that a [email protected] was a pregnant fish. That is probably the strangest one I remember apart from the Chinese Wall when everybody knows that Tommo’s honker is visible from Planet G18, fully 7 galaxies away.

    Some stuff just gets repeated so often that people start to believe it – like the 40 points safety thing, when the facts prove otherwise.

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  5. kimtoon: But maybe a fitter one who follows instructions ?

    Yup – I can see the comparisons, but from watching both I feel Slimani A) makes use of his size much better B) puts himself about more C) Is a better finisher D) Is quicker. Only thing I couldn’t comment on well is hold up play.

    Here’s the chat I had with a Leicester fan who’d seen a lot of Slimani – worth a read lads & lasses!

    http://www.nufcblog.co.uk/2018/02/02/leicester-city-season-ticket-holder-tells-nufc-fans-what-to-expect-from-islam-slimani-very-interesting/

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  6. Yeah he seems like a much more natural finisher. Seems like a definite upgrade with a better mentality but time will tell if he can fit into Rafa’s system. I would hope so if Rafa has gone after him!

    I reckon if he, Kenedy and new GK stay fit, we will have a much more mobile team and will score more goals as a result.

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  7. Sham:I think Darlow and Elliot have the same problem – they both stay on their line too much and can’t kick for toffee. I didn’t notice it at first, but it sends the wrong message to the defence who are always nervous because our keepers are nervous. You really see it when you compare them to that Mackem lad at Everton.

    They are both good shot stoppers, as was Krul until about his last 6 months here. However, that doesn’t seem to be enough for the modern game and hopefully our tactics will change from hoofing it to Joselu on the half way line.

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  8. Inagree Eric. Youbcan see Rafa wants to play the game possession based but when you dont have the players to do it, you are a bit stuck. The game has moved on from hoof and hope.

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  9. Bloody hell, just thinking what a 25 year old Shearer with good knees would be worth now! Probably more than Stavely wants to pay for the whole club.

    If Harry Kane, and he can only be called by both his names, that is a commentator’s rule, is worth 200 million then you would have had to start the bidding there. HARRY Kane is a good player but Shearer was better. He misses quite a few, probably like 5 against Man U alone but it turned out not to matter.

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  10. Olly: which thread are we supposed to reply on? I see you replied to a few on another one. Never seen them post other than on that one. Is there some secret NUFCblog.co.uk chat group or what?

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  11. Eric Sykes:
    Olly: which thread are we supposed to reply on? I see you replied to a few on another one. Never seen them post other than on that one. Is there some secret NUFCblog.co.uk chat group or what?

    I’ve wondered about that a couple of time,you never see them on this blog,very bloody strange

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  12. Do you know who is playing brilliantly now?Thauvin. He is lights out for Marseilles. I amd watching their game now. We were too hasty to sell him. Hopefully wont happen with Mitro.

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  13. It is Marseilles against Metz. There is another NUFC old boy for Metz – Riviere – he is still crap by the looks of it.

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  14. The list of 25 registered players is published now… who is Mato Sanmartin, Jose Luis? I don’t recognise that name at all. I see we still have Curtis Good stealing money from us, and no mention of Yasmin Ben El Manhi did we sell him?

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  15. My brother had a girlfriend years ago called Yasmin. Always remember thinking how much she looked like the singer Sunny back in the 70’s. She sang Doctors orders ( uk version )
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pynx-NMVrqs

    stunning looking and a good laugh too, bought me some great clothes from bus stop boutique in Bristol , was gutted when they split .

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  16. Lee Ryder‏Verified account
    @lee_ryder

    Follow Follow @lee_ryder

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    Lee Ryder Retweeted The Chronicle

    #nufc players tracked by GPS in training – hence Mitrovic exit

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  17. kimtoon:
    Lee Ryder‏Verified account
    @lee_ryder

    Follow Follow @lee_ryder

     More

    Lee Ryder Retweeted The Chronicle

    #nufc players tracked by GPS in training – hence Mitrovic exit

    thats a new one on me mate

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  18. Of the players we have now I’d go for 433 with Diame sitting, Merino LM, Shelvey RM and Kenedy, Slimani and Murphy up top. Could be tasty.

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  19. georgio:
    Of the players we have now I’d go for 433 with Diame sitting, Merino LM, Shelvey RM and Kenedy, Slimani and Murphy up top. Could be tasty.

    Georgio – yes mate, like that one a lot. If not Murphy I’d go Perez. But 4-3-3 is defo the way for me like.

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  20. kimtoon:
    West brom ahead
    Brighton ahead

    I’m a bit conflicted in these games. Obviously draws are better but a win for either side and it means another side is knackered.

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  21. Stupor Bowl tomorrow. 14 minutes of action and 3 hours of ads. I know people who go to watch the game for the ads. How ****ed up and duped by corporations is that?

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  22. Thank God for that. Huddersfield were cheating. They had to sub a player because he was trying to kill McTomanay.

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  23. Huddersfield should be down to 8 players. This Ref is Trelford Mills. I know you don’t get the 3pm games in the UK, but this really is a joke.

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  24. Kimtoon: I am like you and watching the other games hoping for draws. But really, it is up to us. We need to take care of our own business.

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  25. Come on WBA! One more goal and that will do. Plus it’s about time West Ham and Bournemouth got their act together 😯

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  26. Eric Sykes:
    Kimtoon: I am like you and watching the other games hoping for draws. But really, it is up to us. We need to take care of our own business.

    Not really. They are all trying to get relegated. As I said, we just need to take care of our own business.

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  27. Stoke, Swans, Huddersfield are all in trouble. Hopefully West Ham and West Brom as well.

    You can all come over for a party in Chicago if West Ham and West Brom go down 🙂 On me 🙂 🙂

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  28. So, did we sell Yasin Ben El Mhani then? Does anyone know? He’s not named in the squad at all but never heard any transfer news on him…

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  29. Stuart79:
    If Bournemouth win they’re out of it. Need a Leicester goal as Swansea are on a good run.

    Don’t know DT but he is young so might not have to be named in the squad as you can have as many 21 and under as you like. I think the rule is that they can be no older than 21 in the year the season starts. I think? Someone would know better and I can’t be bothered to look up the exact rules.

    Does it matter though. He hasn’t had a sniff of the first team anyway. Probably matters to Beardlsey.

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  30. Dubai Toon:
    So, did we sell Yasin Ben El Mhani then? Does anyone know? He’s not named in the squad at all but never heard any transfer news on him…

    I know he’s out of contract this june mate, but last I saw he was linked to Cardiff but don’t think owt happened.

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  31. Mitro, had a header cleared off the line today after coming on as a sub.

    looking at the Fulham fans tweets they love him already and chants of mitro , mitro being heard.

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  32. Eric Sykes:
    Olly: which thread are we supposed to reply on? I see you replied to a few on another one. Never seen them post other than on that one. Is there some secret NUFCblog.co.uk chat group or what?

    That’s me just responding to people commenting on news articles. As always, you guys keep all your conversations in the featured pieces we write that go across the top of the blog. I’ll continue to post ‘NEW THREAD’ when there’s a new one out so you know where to move to next.

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