Following opening day defeats in the Premier League, Norwich City host Newcastle United at Carrow Road on Saturday afternoon. Norwich stuck to their guns at Anfield but were picked off comfortably by Liverpool in the first half, as they romped to a 4-1 win on Friday. Meanwhile, Newcastle were defeated 1-0 at home by Arsenal as Steve Bruce looks to get his first points on the board against one of his former clubs.
Despite losing 4-1 on the opening night of the Premier League season, Norwich City can take plenty of positives from their performance at Anfield last time out. While their defending throughout the first half was naive at best, the Canaries can be encouraged by how often they were able to test the Liverpool defence – one which was the best in the Premier League last season. Teemu Pukki gave the travelling Norwich fans a consolation goal to celebrate in the second half, adding to the 30 goals he scored in all competitions last season straight away. Now back on home soil with a side who won’t offer the same attacking threat and quality as their opponents last week, it will be fascinating to see how Norwich get on against a side who will likely be in the bottom half of the table with them this season.
Like Norwich, Newcastle United were given a tough assignment on the opening weekend of the season, and also came out of it without any points to show for their efforts. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored the game’s only goal as Newcastle struggled to ever really test Bernd Leno in the Arsenal goal, allowing the Gunners to run out 1-0 winners at St. James’ Park. There’s a real uncertainty about what Newcastle could achieve this season, with Rafa Benitez now out of the door and replaced by Steve Bruce, who has also replaced the likes of Salomon Rondon and Ayoze Perez with Joelinton and Allan Saint-Maximin. With Tottenham and Liverpool to come in two of their next three games after this weekend, this is a game Newcastle fans will feel they have to get a result from before bigger tests arise.
Norwich are set to be without four first-team players, with Timm Klose, Christoph Zimmerman, Alexander Tettey and Louis Thompson all out with injuries. Todd Cantwell was given a surprising start against Liverpool and should keep his place on the flank, while Teemu Pukki will start in attack once again. New signings Patrick Roberts and Josip Drmic will likely have to settle for a place on the bench once again.
Andy Carroll will hope to be included in the 18-man squad against Norwich on Saturday after rejoining the Magpies on a free transfer. On the injury front, both Florian Lejeune and Christian Atsu are both doubtful, but DeAndre Yedlin could be involved. After a bright display from the bench last time out, Allan Saint-Maximin will be pushing to start this weekend for the visitors.
Given the way Norwich created chances at Anfield last week, we can see them causing plenty of problems for Newcastle’s defence this weekend, and we like their price of 2.10 to pick up the three points here. Teemu Pukki looked sharp at Anfield last time out and scored with his first shot on target in the Premier League. The Finland international is priced at 2.60 to score anytime in this contest.