Football

Can Newcastle pile more misery on Manchester United?

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Newcastle have been in such a fantastic form that only league leaders Arsenal had beaten. The Toon have managed four wins out of their last five, but there's a tie they haven't won since the 70s - Manchester United at Old Trafford.

David Moyes had to swallow another bitter pill when Everton ended a 21-year draught at Old Trafford by winning 1-0 on Wednesday - so the Red Devils would definitely be hungry for a win on Saturday lunchtime.

Newcastle fell to a surprising defeat at Swansea conceding three goals on a night when they were favourites in the tie. The Swans, who had not won a game at home by then, controlled the midfield and delivered a sweet victory.

Alan Pardew had been warned by Mike Ashley that he must steer the team back in the top half, just like he did two seasons ago when the Magpies narrowly missed a top four finish.

What the Toon didn't realise at the time was the fixture pile-up could ruin their league performance - which was why Newcastle drifted back in mid-table last season.

But Newcastle did an impressive run last month beating West Brom, Norwich, Tottenham and Chelsea in a row. Against the Blues, Newcastle didn't let their opponents create chances from play while the Magpies were powerful up front with Yohan Cabaye, Moussa Sissoko, Yoan Gouffran and Loic Remy pressuring the Chelsea defence.

With two wins from the London clubs, draw with Liverpool and loss to Manchester City, no one could state anything is certain when Newcastle enters a clash with the giants.

United, who made history for the wrong reasons when Everton beat them for the first time in 21 years, will be hungry for the best result on Saturday lunchtime.

The Red Devils however have been strikingly inconsistent since Sir Alex Ferguson retired and haven't won in the last three games. With Marouane Fellaini failing to live up to his price tag and Wayne Rooney missing the tie, the man who could prove vital for the Red Devils is Shinji Kagawa.

Playing just off the striker in the last two games, he's managed 83% attacking pass completion and could break Pardew's tight defence with a touch.

Newcastle could be blamed to be overly reliant on midfield maestro Cabaye, who's managed 79% accurate passing so far, but if United blocks him, the Magpies could well be cooked.

Indeed, the Geordies need to ensure their midfield doesn't give up the fight as easy as in the Swans tie, when the Welsh team had the possessions 78-22 at some point.

On the bright side, Hatem Ben Arfa is back from illness in the middle and with Cheick Tiote's tackling crucial against Kagawa plus Cabaye's creativeness, the Magpies could prove hard to be stopped by United.

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Newcastle United
Manchester United

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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