Newcastle United v Leicester City preview

Newcastle United boss Eddie Howe admits his side’s title challenge presents various pitfalls in the transfer market as his side prepare to restart their Premier League season with a trip to Leicester City.

The Magpies sit third in the table, behind only Arsenal and Manchester City, with the fruits of last year’s transition season to new ownership paying off after the ex-Bournemouth man’s steady accumulation of transfer targets.

Several of them, such as Kieran Trippier, Bruno Guimaraes, Nick Pope and Alexander Isak, have contributed to Newcastle’s new status as title contenders, with more fresh faces on the way, but Howe acknowledges the increased risk of breaking financial rules could hinder their quest.

“We’re in a very different position to where we were last year when we knew we had to trade and get some good numbers through the door to try and lift the group,” he said.

“Now we’re also in a different position with Financial Fair Play – last year we didn’t have a legacy of transfer fees so we had a gap that we could attack. I’m not dodging the question but we’re unsure what we want window to look out, we’re not sure what’s going to happen.

“In my view, you have to be very careful that you don’t do anything that disrupts the group, but you also have to be aware that you don’t want a group that is stale. Getting the balance right is critical.”

Opposite number Brendan Rodgers, meanwhile, was effusive in his assessment of the Magpies’ campaign to date, suggesting they are developing the club in a smart way.

“They are off to a good start,” he added. “Eddie has done a fantastic job. On the pitch they have signed players who have really improved the squad and the team. The players they have brought into the back line in particular give them that dominance and give them a base for the rest of ​​the

“Off the field you bring in (sporting director) Dan Ashworth who is a top operator. The supporters bring a great intensity to the game. They try to build something and they do it the right way.”


Leicester – Harvey Barnes

The winger has largely been the man with the magic touch for the foxes this year. He has scored six goals this season and has also secured all of Leicester’s wins to date this term, with only Leeds striker Rodrigo achieving a similar feat.

Newcastle – Miguel Almiron

The Paraguay international was one of the most in-form players before the break, having been involved in eight goals across his previous eight Premier League games. That tally includes seven finishes and an assist for Joe Willock’s winner against Chelsea last time out.


– After winning just three of their first 17 Premier League meetings with Newcastle (D5 L9), Leicester have now won nine of their last 13 against the Magpies (L4).

– Newcastle have won two of their last three Premier League games against Leicester (L1), as many as they had in their previous 10 (L8). They have won three of their last five at the King Power Stadium but have lost the other two by 5-0 and 4-0 margins.

– Since returning to the Premier League in 2014, Leicester have won just one of their eight matches played on Boxing Day (D1 L6) and that came in 2018 against eventual champions Manchester City.

– Newcastle have lost their last six league games played on Boxing Day since beating Stoke 5-1 in 2013. The last team to lose more in a row on this day in the top four tiers of English football was Walsall (7 between 1949 and 1957).

– After conceding 22 goals in their first seven Premier League games this season, Leicester have conceded just three in their last eight, keeping six clean sheets in the process. The Foxes are looking to win three consecutive league games for the first time since January 2021.

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