MX23RW : Tuesday, August 3 08:28:43| >> :600:135212:135212:
Jul 11, 2020 at 12.30pm UK at Vicarage Road Stadium
NewcastleNewcastle United
Deeney (52' pen., 82' pen.)
FT(HT: 0-1)
Gayle (23')

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

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Premier League clash between Watford and Newcastle United, including team news and predicted lineups.

Buoyed by a much-needed win last time out, Watford will be looking to climb clear of the Premier League relegation zone when they host Newcastle United on Saturday lunchtime.

The Hornets beat bottom side Norwich City in midweek and are four points above the drop, while Newcastle - thrashed 5-0 by Manchester City - are jostling for position in mid-table.

Match preview

Watford players celebrate Danny Welbeck's goal against Norwich on July 7, 2020© Reuters

Nigel Pearson praised the "strength" of his Watford side to dig deep against doomed Norwich and pick up all three points in a vital 2-1 win at Vicarage Road.

That win, which came courtesy of Danny Welbeck's spectacular overhead kick, ended the Hornets' six-game wait for a victory in the Premier League.

After beating Liverpool 3-0 at the end of February to claim one of the shock results of this or any other top-flight campaign, Watford accrued one point from the next 15 available.

It was a run that left Pearson's men at serious risk of dropping into the Championship, but the win over Norwich gives them a healthy four-point buffer on the two sides below them.

However, Aston Villa and Bournemouth do still have a game in hand to play on Thursday, against Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur respectively.

Watford still have work to do if they are to stay afloat, and with Manchester City and Arsenal to face in their last two games they could do with a victory on Saturday.

Newcastle boss Steve Bruce on June 24, 2020© Reuters

There is perhaps no kinder fixture for Watford than the visit of Newcastle, either, with United stuck in mid-table and possibly already thinking of their shortened summer break.

Steve Bruce's men won three games in a row either side of the coronavirus-enforced hiatus to ensure that relegation would not be a concern for them this season.

Results since then have been largely mixed, with a 4-1 away win at Bournemouth coming a week before a 5-0 thrashing at the hands of Man City, summing up their inconsistent nature.

United were truly dreadful at the Etihad Stadium and could have lost by even more in the end, with the Magpies struggling to adapt to a five-at-the-back system.

Bruce was without Allan Saint-Maximin, in fairness, while Jamaal Lascelles, Andy Carroll and Isaac Hayden were also absent from the matchday squad due to injury.

Still, there can be no excuse for the type of display produced by the Toon and they have to quickly pick themselves up for this trip to Hertfordshire.

Watford's Premier League form: LDLLLW

Newcastle United's Premier League form: WWDWDL
Newcastle United's form (all competitions): WDLWDL

Team News

Newcastle United's Miguel Almiron celebrates scoring their first goal on December 21, 2019© Reuters

Gerard Deulofeu, Daryl Janmaat and Isaac Success all remain sidelined for Watford, while others may be in need of a rest given the quick turnaround in matches.

However, Pearson will want to name something close to the XI that started the win over Norwich, which should mean Welbeck retaining his place in attack after his match-winning strike.

Captain Troy Deeney has gone six games since last finding the back of the net but is expected to lead the line once again against for the Hornets.

As for Newcastle, Bruce is sweating on the fitness of the likes of Saint-Maximin, Carroll, Hayden and Lascelles for this trip south.

Nabil Bentaleb was poor against City and is likely to be replaced by Matthew Longstaff in central midfield, while Miguel Almiron is another in line for a recall after being given a breather in midweek.

Elsewhere, Dwight Gayle will be hoping to return to the side up top, potentially allowing Joelinton to move out to the flank.

Watford possible starting lineup:
Foster; Femenia, Kabasele, Dawson, Masina; Capoue, Hughes; Sarr, Doucoure, Welbeck; Deeney

Newcastle United possible starting lineup:
Dubravka; Manquillo, Schar, Fernandez, Rose; Ritchie, Longstaff, Shelvey, Joelinton; Almiron; Gayle

Sports Mole Logo

We say: Watford 1-0 Newcastle United

This is the easiest of Watford's remaining fixtures and they could really do with picking up another victory. Newcastle will not be as bad as they were on Wednesday, and Bruce will have more players to choose from, but we can see the hosts grinding out a precious win.

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Jonjo Shelvey celebrates getting an equaliser for Newcastle United on December 8, 2019
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Olympic medal table header
CountryGold medalSilver MedalBronze MedalT
United StatesUnited States22251764
Olympics flagRussian Olympic Committee12211750
Great BritainGreat Britain11121235
Today's Olympic highlights header

Tuesday's key events

· Team GB duo Jack Laugher - silver medallist in Rio - and James Heatly take part in the men's 3m springboard semi-final (2am), and will hope to qualify for the final later in the day (7am)

· Two Britons are involved in the women's long jump final, but Abigail Irozuru and Jazmin Sawyers have their work cut out to get a spot on the podium (2.50am)
· Norwegian Karsten Warholm, who broke the world record just last month, goes for gold in the men's 400m hurdles final. USA's Rai Benjamin is expected to be his main challenger (4.20am)
· Great Britain have three representatives in the final of the women's 800m, with Jemma Reekie having perhaps the best chance of a medal (1.25pm)
· A mouth-watering women's 200m final sees Elaine Thompson-Herah go for the prestigious sprint double after claiming the 100m crown. Compatriot Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Namibia's Christine Mboma and USA's Gabrielle Thomas are expected to be her main competitors (1.50pm)

· The rescheduled women's skiff 49er FX (4.33am) and men's skiff 49er (5.33am) come to their conclusion, with Team GB involved in both medal races
· Defending champion Giles Scott bids for a second successive gold in the Finn class medal race (6.33am)
· There is another medal chance for Team GB in the mixed Nacra 17 medal race (7.33am)

· Team GB's Joe Fraser takes part in the parallel bars final, kicking off the final day of artistic gymnastics (9am)
· USA superstar Simone Biles, who has been forced to pull out of all of her finals so far, is on the starting list for the beam final as she bids for a fifth Olympic gold (9.50am)

· The men's semi-finals take place, with Mexico taking on Brazil first up (9am)
· The winner of that first semi-final will face either hosts Japan or Spain (2pm)

· Laura Kenny will look to win a third straight Olympic team pursuit gold medal. Team GB take on United States in their heat (7.44am), with the gold medal race later that day (9.26am)
· Laura's husband and fellow Olympic legend Jason Kenny will also look to continue his huge success in the men's team sprint - an event he has won gold in at every Games since 2008. Team GB will first need to get through the men's qualifying (7.58am), with the gold medal race ending the session (9.44am)

· Pat McCormack will be looking to achieve his dream of Olympic gold when he faces Cuba's Roniel Iglesias (11.05am)

> Today's schedule in full
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