Newcastle United v Arsenal

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Pre-Match Report

Newcastle United v Arsenal: The Brief

It’s the problem that has vexed Arsene Wenger all season. How do we translate our home form into away performances?

Five straight games at the Emirates brought us five straight wins. And to be fair our away form in Europe has been solid. But the standout stat ahead of Sunday’s trip to Newcastle is that we’ve earned just 24 per cent of our Premier League points in away games this season - the lowest share in the division.
 
Putting that right on the back of a very late Thursday night in Moscow is the challenge facing Wenger and the players. But if you like your omens then perhaps this one will appeal: the last time we lost four in a row on our top-flight travels was in 1984 - and we ended that streak with a win at St. James’ Park.
 
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will return to our squad and Mohamed Elneny is available after his red card against Southampton was overturned. But Granit Xhaka will need to recover from illness to reclaim his midfield place in the North-East.
 
You’re in the right place for a comprehensive pre-match briefing. Watch some classic goals, hear from the boss, get the latest team news and have your say.

Arsene Wenger on Mohamed Elneny

ONE TO WATCH… AUBAMEYANG

Auba has scored in each of his last four Premier League games and will be fully rested after sitting out another Europa League game.
 
We’ve seen a variety of finishes from our record signing, culminating in a brave toe-poke as Southampton’s goalkeeper came out to challenge for Danny Welbeck’s flick against Southampton.
 
“He’s worked hard,” said the boss. “I feel he was not completely ready physically when he joined us but he worked very hard in training.
 
“He worked a lot technically as well, and has improved his touch. He’s quick now, sharp, intelligent and I think he enjoys being part of the group. You feel that when he plays and that’s why he’s very interesting.
 
“Also we need some fresh players over the weekend, so he always sure to play!”


TEAM NEWS:

ARSENAL: Mkhitaryan (knee), Ospina (ankle), Maitland-Niles (muscular), Xhaka (doubt - illness)
 
NEWCASTLE: None 

THE OPPOSITION

Tactical expert Michael Cox on Newcastle…

“Newcastle’s defensive organisation remains very good, as you’d expect from a Rafa Benitez side, with the full backs tucking inside and the midfield quartet protecting them effectively. Centre back Jamaal Lascelles has probably been Newcastle’s star performer.

“However, Newcastle are sometimes guilty of sitting too deep for too long, inviting waves of constant pressure. Arsenal will have spells when they’re clearly on top, and need to convert possession dominance into clear-cut chances.”


THE FINAL WORD… ON OUR AWAY FORM

“There are certainly a few factors but there’s no real rationality in there,” said the boss.
 
“After we have lost one or two, the confidence drops a little bit. We were sometimes unlucky and sometimes maybe defensively we weren’t stable enough. It would be good for us to finish strong away from home now in the Premier League.” 

Follow the Newcastle game LIVE on Arsenal.com

Follow the Newcastle game LIVE on Arsenal.com

Gallery

Pictures: First team train ahead of Newcastle

First team train ahead of Newcastle

The lads were hard at work on Saturday morning, preparing for this weekend's Premier League clash with Newcastle United at St James' Park.

Our club photographer was there and sent back these pictures:

Interview

‘He’s super-popular and I wanted him to stay’

Mohamed Elneny is having a month to remember.

The Egypt midfielder signed a new contract with us last week, had a red card overturned in the wake of the Southampton game, and pulled the strings as we fought our way past CSKA Moscow on Thursday.
 
Elneny set up Danny Welbeck’s vital goal with a perfect pass into the penalty area, and set Aaron Ramsey racing clear for a stoppage-time second.

“He a super-popular player and everybody inside the club loves him,” said Arsene Wenger.
 
“But he’s not only loved, he is also a very good player and he showed that in Moscow. I never wanted him to leave, I always wanted him to stay. I must say that we had demands for him but he always wanted to stay too.
 
“In the second half in Moscow he played in defence and then afterwards, when he moved back into the middle of the park, he gave assists. He works hard and is generous. Overall, I think he did very well.

“And I’m very happy [about the red card decision] because I think it was a wise decision and he will be available for Newcastle.”

News

Follow the Newcastle game LIVE on Arsenal.com

Follow the Newcastle game LIVE on Arsenal.com

We return to Premier League action when taking on Newcastle on Sunday lunchtime - and if you're not going to the game, don't panic because you can follow the game with us.

Tune in to the website from 1pm (UK time) for the following from our Premier League match: 

  • Matchday Show, with live build-up and audio commentary from 1.30pm (UK time)
  • Live text commentary - featuring minute-by-minute updates and insights from our fans on Twitter
  • A short goals clip, extended highlights and a full match replay will be available from midnight on Sunday

It's all free with Digital Membership - and remember, you can listen on the Arsenal App too!

Interview

‘He has power, pace and is finishing well’

Arsene Wenger has always been a huge fan of Danny Welbeck. So the plaudits our striker is currently earning don’t surprise him at all.

Welbeck was at it again on Thursday night with a critical intervention that helped us past CSKA after a nervy experience in Moscow.
 
The Russians led 2-0 to reduce our deficit lead to 4-3, but Welbeck’s glorious turn on the left touchline opened up CSKA and the England forward finished clinically after an exchange of passes with Mohamed Elneny.

“We know how good he is and I said that many times,” said Wenger.
 
“I’m happy for him. He surprises some people but he has power, he has pace, he is finishing well now and I believe he is a team player as well.
 
“He likes to help the team and for a striker, that’s an outstanding quality as well.”

Fixtures

Carabao Cup
Ticket Info
Premier League
Ticket Info

Results

Premier League
Europa League