Newcastle United will be hosting Wigan Athletic on Monday December 3 at St. James’ Park in one of the English Premier League’s most important showdowns of the weekend. Both teams are trying to keep their heads above water as they’re perilously close to the relegation zone. Three points here would be crucial for either team and it should be an exciting, hard-fought battle.
After having a good year last season, Newcastle has been struggling so far during this campaign. They sit in 14th place in the league table with just 14 points from 14 games. They’ve managed to win just three games while they’ve drawn five and lost six. Newcastle’s scored only 14 goals for while allowing 21 against. As expected, Wigan as usual, are near the bottom of the league under the guidance of Roberto Martinez. However, they’re level on points with Newcastle at 14. They’ve won four games, drawn two and lost eight while scoring 15 goals and letting in 25 against. Both Wigan and Newcastle are just a pair of points ahead of the relegation zone.
Newcastle has been having problems scoring goals and that has surprised many fans since Senegalese strikers Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse were two of the top scorers in the league last year. They’ve also been having trouble in their own end. Demba Ba has still been pulling his weight though as he leads the team with eight goals. It’s basically Cisse who hasn’t been scoring, but it’s hard to do so when manager Alan Pardew leaves him on the bench. He’s definitely not going to break out of his slump from there. Arouna Kone has been the top marksman for Wigan so far this season with four goals.
Alan Pardew is now second guessing himself over not adding moiré depth during the transfer window this summer. The only veteran they signed was Vurnon Anita, but the squad has been suffering due to injuries and suspensions. They’ve paid for it dearly with four straight league losses and may have to make some additions during the January transfer window. The may be looking for a central defender since Steven Taylor is out of action until February.
Pardew will have to name a lineup against Wigan that doesn’t include Taylor, James Perch, Hatem Ben Arfa, Yohan Cabaye, Shola Ameobi, and Gabriel Obertan as they are all out due to various injuries. Ben Arfa and Cabaye especially will be missed as they are two of the club’s top players.
Martinez’s team is coming off a 2-0 loss to Manchester City on Wednesday, but is nothing much more than a mediocre unit even with the addition of striker Kone. They didn’t manage to win a game in November so they’re desperate to turn that trend around. The team last won back on Oct. 28 when they beat West Brom at home. Martinez is hoping that midfielder David Jones and defender Gary Caldwell will both be fit enough to play. However, there are still several players out of action due to injury. These are midfielders Ben Watson and Albert Crusat, forwards Shaun Maloney and Ryo Miyaichi, and defenders Ivan Ramis and Antolin Alcaraz.
Our Predictions for Newcastle v Wigan
This is an enormous chance for both teams to earn a win and after 90 minutes the most likely team to achieve it will be Newcastle.
William Hill has the latest odds of a Newcastle win at 21/20 with a Wigan victory at 14/5 and a draw at 9/4. Find around 180 different bets for this match. I will also go with a bet on “more goals in 2nd half” for around double the money.