Newcastle United begin their life at the English Championship with the trip to Craven Cottage on Friday to meet Fulham FC.
Fulham have been busy during the summer pre-season, they have been involved in five club friendlies this summer and the manager Slavisa Jokanovic is delighted with the pre-season build up as they look for a win in their first game of the season.
Meanwhile, the baggies had a rough outing last season as they were relegated to the second tier football league. Towards the end of last season, they acquired the services of Rafael Benitez who couldn’t save them from dropping down. Now the experienced Spanish manager will be hoping for a quick return to the top flight English football.
Fulham: Team News
Fulham will be without Ryan Federicks, who is ruled out for three months following an ankle injury. While Tim Reams is recovering from illness and is likely to be side-lined here.
Fulham strengthened their squad with seven new signings in the summer transfer window. Among the new arrivals David Button is a certain to start in goal, alongside defenders Denis Odoi and Tomas Kalas.
Fulham: Predicted Line-up (4-2-3-1)
Button – Sessegnon, Madl, Kalas, Odoi – Parker, Tunnicliffe – Ayite, Aluko, Cairney – Smith.
Newcastle United: Team News
The Baggies will be missing Massadio Haidara in the left full back, Kevin Mbabu and Rob Elliot as they are on injury.
Aleksandar Mitrovic is suspended for four matches following his red card in the final Premier League match against Tottenham. In his absence, the new signing Dwight Gayle is expected to start at the lone striker.
Karl Darlow is likely to start in goal with strong competition from the new summer arrival Matz Sels.
Newcastle United: Predicted Line-up (4-2-3-1)
Darlow – Dummett, Mbemba, Lascelles, Janmaat – Colback, Shelvey – Aarons, Perez, Ritchie – Gayle.
Fulham vs Newcastle United: Head to Head stats
Fulham has a good record against Newcastle, they have won 20 of their past 40 games against Newcastle, and they have lost 13 and drawn 7.
The host have won 15 of their last 20 games against Newcastle at Craven Cottage, with the rest being 3 loss and 2 drawn.
Fulham are on a 5-match winning run at home against Newcastle United.
Fulham vs Newcastle: Prediction
Fulham’s five summer club friendly games have ended in a draw, a defeat and 3 wins. They have kept clean sheet in 3 of their last 5 games, they have also scored at least 3 goals in 3 of their last 5 games.
Newcastle enjoyed their pre-season as they were on a jolly ride, winning 4 of their 5 games which includes 6-0 thrashing to Bohemians. Newcastle scored at least 2 goals in all their pre-season games and they also kept 3 clean sheets.
The visitors might be able to edge this, but a draw is the most probable outcome from the opening match of the English Champions 2016/17.
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