Nottingham Forest vs Newcastle – Analysis, Prediction, Team News
Friday 17th March 2023
As part of our weekend Premier League predictions, we take a look at Newcastle’s trip to Nottingham. Forest’s home form is far more impressive than their away form – can they get a result here? Read on with our Nottingham Forest vs Newcastle prediction.
Nottingham Forest vs Newcastle Match Preview
Forest come into this game in mediocre form. Indeed, they have lost three and drawn two of their previous five matches. In this run, they have conceded twelve goals and scored only four. At the weekend, they lost 3-1 against Spurs in London, being 3-0 down after an hour. The Xg were 2.19 to 1.68 in favour of Spurs, so Forest probably did deserve to lose. This result is the latest bad one for Forest away from home this season – they sit bottom of the away table, with one win and three draws (and only four goals scored) in their 13 matches on their travels.
Thankfully for Forest, things have been better at home. They are unbeaten in their last nine at the City Ground, winning four. Therefore, if they do stay up, it will be their home form that will make it possible. They are in a relegation dogfight, however. With 26 points from 26 games, they are averaging a point a game. They are only two points above the relegation zone as only five points separate 11th to 20th. They must pick up more points fast.
Newcastle travel south with a much-needed win under their belts after a run of five games without a victory (three draws, two defeats). Thanks to Isak and Almiron’s goals, a 2-1 conquest of Wolves keeps them in the scrap for the Champions League. The Toon’s previous eight league matches before the weekend had all seen fewer than three scored. Indeed, they have only scored five in their last nine games and are clearly struggling for goals. With only two wins in 2023, this year has seen a marked downturn compared to their successful 2022.
Newcastle have not won away from home in four games, though this run did include trips to Man City and Arsenal. They have generally been decent on the road, accumulating points in ten of their 12 away games (four wins, six draws). A massive problem for them is the number of stalemates they are involved in: they have had 11 draws in their 25 games this season. They are in fifth place with 44 points after 25 games, and if they win their next two games, they will enter the top four.
Injuries and Suspensions
Might Not Play: Hennessey, Kouyate, Johnson, Wood
Will Not Play: Henderson, McKenna, Richards, Awoniyi, Biancone, Boly
Might Not Play: Schar
Will Not Play: Krafth, M Longstaff, Fraser, Joelinton, Gordon
Nottingham Forest vs Newcastle (Predicted)
Nottingham Forest (4-3-2-1 / 4-3-3): Navas; Lodi, Felipe, Worrall, Aurier; Shelvey, Mangala, Freuler; Lingard, Gibbs-White, Dennis
Newcastle (4-3-3): Pope; Burn, Schar, Botman, Trippier; S Longstaff, Willock, Guimaraes; Saint-Maximin, Isak, Almiron
Nottingham Forest vs Newcastle Analysis
Forest’s Home Form Is Carrying Them
There is no doubt that Forest are a somewhat bipolar team. With 20 points picked up at home and six away, they will rely massively on their home form to keep them in the division. Why they are so much better at home is a mystery – most teams are better in their own stadium, but the disparity here is quite significant. Perhaps Steve Cooper’s side receive an adrenaline boost by playing in front of their noisy supporters?
They are a counter-attacking side, so you’d imagine they might be more comfortable going away and ‘parking the bus’, but this doesn’t appear to be the case. We think they feel more confident at home and attack teams more. Whatever the reason, with six matches left to play at home – including six-pointers against Wolves and Southampton – they must win as many as possible, as their away form doesn’t look like improving.
Are Newcastle Back on Track?
Given the awful run Newcastle have been on, it is too early to say whether the win at the weekend will change their fortunes. The Magpies have experienced a reasonably torrid 2023, where the goals and points have dried up. They also failed to win a first trophy in 54 years by losing the Carabao Cup Final to Man Utd.
One thing is sure – Newcastle must get back to winning ways if they are to play in the Champions League next season. Given their takeover, Champions League football is the next step in their progression. Having started the season well, they will feel it is a missed opportunity if they don’t qualify. However, Spurs, Liverpool, and maybe even Brighton are also in contention. Newcastle undoubtedly cannot afford to go on another run of two wins in nine.
Both These Teams Like To Play On The Break. Which Will Have More Control?
It is difficult to say how this match will go. Neither of these teams are possession sides, with Newcastle averaging 50 per cent and Forest 40 per cent this season. With Forest being at home and their form there being so crucial for them, we anticipate them taking more risks than if the game was at St James’ Park (where Newcastle won comfortably 2-0 in the first matchday of the season). Hence, this game could be even in dominance, where both teams have their spells in the ascendancy.
The midfield battle could be crucial. It might be Mangala, Shelvey and Freuler against Sean Longstaff, Guimaraes and Willock (Joelinton is still suspended). Both teams will take turns building the play, and the other will press to win the ball back and launch attacks. Indeed, we expect Forest to be well up for it and close down Newcastle ferociously from the first minute. It might be a game where whichever team has less possession has the best chance because both teams are best on transitions and can be vulnerable when they have the ball.
In attacking areas, Lingard and Gibbs-White might play in the number 10 areas and flanks for Forest (Johnson’s fitness is touch and go). Whoever plays there must try to find little gaps between the Newcastle lines where they can create and also stretch play through running and offering balls up the sides and into the channels. The Forest centre-forward must also try to win the battle with Schar and Botman.
We expect Saint-Maximin and Almiron to play as the wide men for Newcastle. Both are a box of tricks (particularly the Frenchman) and will look to take on Lodi and Aurier in the Forest full-back positions. Tripper will raid forward from right-back to support Almiron and must deliver crosses. On other occasions, he must work his way into the box. Isak or Wilson will start up front and must hold the ball up well and get on the end of any chances created. They must try to take opportunities and silence the Forest crowd. The Magpies would welcome an early goal.
This game is a challenging one to predict. Newcastle have been involved in many low-scoring games recently. In contrast, Forest have seen three or more goals scored in their last three league games and their previous three home matches with Newcastle (in all competitions). Therefore, it is tricky to grasp how the game will go. As stated, we expect both teams to have their moments of control, and Forest especially should be full of energy.
We are going to lean more towards a low-scoring game here. At times, Newcastle are a defensive team; they will likely try to shut down Forest and give them no encouragement. Forest’s home record is commendable, but Newcastle have been competent away from home. Hence, this match could end in a stalemate. If there is to be a winner, we think it will be by one goal either way (probably Newcastle). However, the Magpies have not won enough matches recently for us to feel confident they can win away against a good home side.
Nottingham Forest 1-1 Newcastle
Nottingham Forest vs Newcastle Betting Tip – Draw Odds:
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