Arteta demands a ‘much better’ performance against Newcastle to keep the title race alive
Newcastle host Arsenal this afternoon in a top-flight game that will have repercussions for the Premier League title race and the battle for the top four.
Eddie Howe’s men will be hoping to hold onto third place and secure a return to European competition in next season’s Champions League. Three points against the Gunners would almost secure them a place in the top four and ease the pressure on the Magpies ahead of their last few games.
Arsenal, meanwhile, face another tough game as they look to continue their title hunt. Mikel Arteta’s side know their fate is out of their hands now that Manchester City are top of the table. Should City win all remaining games, they will be crowned champions again regardless of the Gunners’ results. However, Arteta’s men can increase the likelihood of City slipping if they increase the pressure on the reigning champions with wins.
The long-time leaders ended a four-game winless streak with a comfortable win over Chelsea on Tuesday night but will face much tougher opponents this afternoon.
Follow all the action when Newcastle host Arsenal in the Premier League:
Eddie Howe is not losing his sleep over Liverpool’s offer to deny Newcastle the top four spots
Eddie Howe insists he is not losing any sleep over Liverpool’s offer to deny Newcastle a place in the Premier League top four.
Responsible for two of third-placed Magpies’ four defeats in the league this season, Jurgen Klopp’s men have built consistent late form, winning each of their last five games by just under six points.
That deficit could have been reduced to just three points – despite the Reds playing two more games – before Howe’s side take on Arsenal on Sunday and the chasers engage in a late sprint.
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 3:25 p.m
Newcastle vs Arsenal
Arsenal have kept 29 clean sheets against Newcastle in the Premier League – more than any side have conceded against a single opponent in the history of the competition.
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 3:20 p.m
Newcastle vs Arsenal
Newcastle are looking to win three straight Premier League home games against Arsenal for the first time since 1996.
The Magpies drew 0-0 at the Emirates Stadium in January and avoided defeat in both Premier League games against Arsenal in a single season for the first time since 2010/11.
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 3:15 p.m
Xhaka recalls losing to Newcastle last season
Both clubs will be battling for Champions League spots next year, which is a contrast to this time last season. Newcastle fought off relegation and the win over the Gunners ended Arsenal’s chances of playing in Europe’s top competition.
Granit Xhaka said of this defeat: “It was a very painful day, I hope we are a different team now. We’re also in a different position – we have respect for Newcastle because what they’re doing is amazing and nobody expected it from them, but maybe [the same for] us before the season.
“We know how strong they are, they are stronger than last season, that’s for sure. When we played them at home we had better chances and were the better team, but they are very organised.
“They also know exactly what they are doing with a great coach and we have to be 100 per cent focused. Hopefully with a bit of luck, our intensity and our level we can beat them.”
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 3:10 p.m
Eddie Howe has no doubts Anthony Gordon will become ‘a top player’ for Newcastle
Eddie Howe is convinced Anthony Gordon will be a top player for Newcastle’s Champions League pursuit despite another early withdrawal against Southampton.
The £45m signing in January was just his third start for the club in Sunday’s 3-1 comeback win over the Saints, which consolidated third but gave way to striker Callum Wilson at half-time.
Gordon, 22, had previously missed two good scoring chances, including clipping the post in the 19th minute after defeating keeper Alex McCarthy, although Howe has been happy with his contribution since arriving from Everton and expects much, much more from him in the future.
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 3:05 p.m
Arsenal have regained their confidence, says Xhaka
After four league games without a win (three draws, one defeat), Arsenal recently beat Chelsea 3-1 to get back on track. That result has instilled a new wave of confidence through the squad and midfielder Granit Xhaka says the team is ready to face Newcastle today.
“To be honest, it’s crazy how quickly football can change,” said Xhaka: “After the four games we didn’t win, maybe our confidence dropped a bit, but then you have a great chance against Playing Chelsea and showing a reaction, and I think that reaction was very good.
“Confidence returned immediately the next day, but it’s just the first step after the four games we didn’t win. Hopefully we can do the same for the next four games.”
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 3:00 p.m
Will Newcastle play two up front?
Callum Wilson and Alexander Isak are both in fantastic form for Newcastle and manager Eddie Howe has to play both alongside Arsenal today.
“It’s not the first time there’s been a temptation to play them together,” said the Magpies boss,
“When you analyze the next game, you have to analyze the opponents and yourself and choose the best team to try and win the game. This weekend will be no different.
“I’ve talked about many different scenarios but ultimately my final decision has to be what the team needs and not what Callum or Alex needs. It’s up to me to make the right choice.”
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 2:55 p.m
Eddie Howe praises Callum Wilson for his reaction to the rotation of the Newcastle squad
Newcastle boss Eddie Howe has praised Callum Wilson’s strong response to the challenge presented to him by record signer Alexander Isak.
The 31-year-old England striker has sacked eight goals in his last seven games, four of them off the bench, with Howe rotating the former Bournemouth frontman and his £60m summer acquisition amid a busy schedule.
Wilson, whose form was questioned in some quarters after returning from the World Cup, was rested twice in the game after scoring two goals as a starter but channeled his frustration in exactly the way Howe had hoped.
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 2:50 p.m
Newcastle vs Arsenal Prediction
Arsenal’s victory over Chelsea was a much-needed return to winning ways but they will fear another blip against a strong Newcastle side who appear determined to secure Champions League football next season.
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 2:45 p.m
Newcastle vs Arsenal predicted lineups
Newcastle XI: pope; Trippier, Schar, Botman, Burn; Willock, Guimaraes, Joelinton; Murphy, Wilson, Almiron.
Arsenal XI: Ramsdale; White, Kiwior, Gabriel, Zinchenko; Xhaka, Jorginho; Saka, Odegaard, Martinelli; Jesus.
Mike JonesMay 7, 2023 2:40 p.m