MX23RW : Sunday, April 5 16:37:00| >> :120:85641:85641:
Jan 25, 2020 at 3pm UK at St James' Park
Attendance: 52,221
NewcastleNewcastle United
0-0
Oxford UtdOxford United
FT

Preview: Newcastle United vs. Oxford United - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of Saturday's FA Cup fourth-round tie between Newcastle United and Oxford United.

Newcastle United will be aiming to reach the fifth round of the FA Cup for the first time in 14 years when they welcome Oxford United to St James' Park on Saturday.

The Magpies required a replay to overcome Rochdale United in the previous round and now face another League One side in Oxford, who saw off Hartlepool United to advance through.


Match preview

Newcastle boss Steve Bruce on January 11, 2020© Reuters

Steve Bruce admitted upon his appointment as Newcastle boss at the start of the season that he wanted to be the man to kickstart the club's love affair with cup competitions.

The 59-year-old has not exactly managed to do that just yet, with the Magpies exiting the EFL Cup on penalties to Leicester City in the third round, before stuttering past Rochdale in their opening FA Cup tie.

Forty-year-old substitute Aaron Wilbraham scored late on to cancel out Miguel Almiron's fierce first-half strike at Spotland, but Bruce's men made no mistake in the replay as they ran out 4-1 winners on home soil last week.

A home match against another third-tier side in Oxford has supporters dreaming of making it into the latter stages of the competition.

Given their Premier League position - seven points above the dropzone with 14 games to go - Bruce is expected to field a strong side on Saturday.

Newcastle fans will not need reminding that nothing is certain in the FA Cup, though, having been knocked out by Oxford at this very stage three seasons ago.

That was only the sixth time in their history they had made it to the fifth round, where they were beaten 3-2 by Middlesbrough.

The U's are flying high in League One as they sit fifth in the table and six points off an automatic promotion spot, but they are winless in their last four outings.

Karl Robinson must now decide whether to go with a strong side for the visit to St James' Park or instead prioritise his side's promotion push, knowing there is a big trip to Peterborough United up next.

As for Bruce, he will be eager for his players to continue building some moment on the back of their dramatic late 2-2 draw at Everton that extended their unbeaten run to five games in all competitions.

Newcastle United's FA Cup form: DW
Newcastle United's form (all competitions): LDDWWD

Oxford United's FA Cup form: WWW
Oxford United's form (all competitions): WLWLDD


Team News

Newcastle United's Joelinton reacts on January 1, 2020© Reuters

Newcastle's players have been dropping like flies over the past month so Bruce will be wary of pushing first-team regulars too hard.

The likes of Martin Dubravka, Federico Fernandez and Isaac Hayden are therefore in line for a deserved rest.

Nabil Bentaleb, signed on loan from Schalke 04 earlier this week, is unlikely to start but should be part of the 18-man squad.

Christian Atsu is among those pushing for inclusion, while Tom Allan - who impressed against Rochdale in the last round - will also be hopeful of getting the nod.

Oxford made the decision to travel up to Newcastle a day early as a chance to "take stock", in the words of boss Robinson.

There is no doubt that promotion to the Championship is the top target for the U's this season, but a fourth-round FA Cup tie away at an established Premier League club will surely tempt Robinson into fielding close to his strongest-possible XI.

That could mean a start up top for Tariqe Fosu, who has eight goals in 25 League One appearances this campaign.

Newcastle United possible starting lineup:
Darlow; Lejeune, Lascelles, Schar; Ritchie, Longstaff, Shelvey, Allan; Saint-Maximin, Joelinton, Almiron

Oxford United possible starting lineup:
Eastwood; Long, Dickie, Mousinho, Ruffels; Sykes, Rodriguez, Baptiste; Holland, Mackie, Fosu-Henry


Sports Mole Logo

We say: Newcastle United 2-0 Oxford United

Oxford have collected two points from a possible 12 in 2020. That disappointing run of form, combined with Newcastle's new-found resilience, suggests a repeat of their 2017 upset against the same opponents will not be on the cards this weekend.


ID:387213:

Who will win Saturday's FA Cup tie between Newcastle United and Oxford United?

Newcastle United
Draw
Oxford United
Newcastle United
80.6%
Draw
9.7%
Oxford United
9.7%
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