With the Tottenham game postponed due to their FA Cup progress, Newcastle face a shorter month fixture wise in March but even so, it promises to shape our season as the race for survival heats up.
With Slimani struggling for fitness, it will likely be Dwight Gayle leading the line as we look to bounce back from the disappointing collapse at Bournemouth.
Here is who we face this month and the danger men to look out for…
This weekend we face the daunting task of a trip to Anfield. Liverpool are flying at the moment and the sentiment of Rafa returning to Liverpool won’t affect the devastating trio of Salah, Firmino and Mane. We historically struggle in this fixture and it is hard to see us stopping Liverpool with the form they are showing at the moment as they chase down 2nd place. We have a good goal difference compared to our direct rivals so it would be good to keep it this way.
Danger man – Mohammed Salah
The Egyptian has lit up the Premier League this season and is hunting down both the golden boot and player of the year award. His pace and deadly finishing is hard to stop and containing him is key to getting any kind of result. Not many have, mind..
Prediction – Liverpool 3-1 Newcastle
Next up is a crunch clash at St.James’ as struggling Southampton make the trip up north. Despite having a good team on paper, the Saints continue to be in the relegation mix and currently are below Newcastle in the table. Southampton have really struggled to score goals under Pellegrino and have the likes of Charlie Austin on the treatment table.
It will be a nervy affair and may just end up in a draw.
Danger man – Dusan Tadic
The playmaker is inconsistent, but on his day can cause problems for any side. Often now deployed in the number ten role, we need to ensure he isn’t given the space to hurt Newcastle, especially on the counter – which is something we have done a lot at home so far this season.
Prediction – Newcastle 1-1 Southampton
The final game of the month is also a massive six pointer against a relegation rival. Huddersfield have had a similar season to Newcastle and after a strong start to the season have dropped down the league. Like the Southampton game it will tense, but to stay up we need to beat the teams around us. Slimani has been pencilled in for a return in this one, but we cannot rely on that..
A bit like he did at the back end of the 2015/16 season, I think Rafa will get us over the line in this one.
Danger man – Steve Mounie
The powerful striker has 8 goals so far this season and is the Terriers focal point in attack. Lascelles will enjoy the physical battle against him and if we keep him quiet, you would back Newcastle to come out on top in this one.
Prediction – Newcastle 2-1 Huddersfield
Four points from these games would be a decent return and much needed considering two of them are against our direct rivals. This would leave us on 33 points and with 7 games to play, a real chance of staying up and getting near the magical 40 points mark.
How many points do you think we will get? And will this shape our season?