Newcastle will look to put last week's defeat to Manchester City behind them as they welcome Sam Allardyce's West Ham side to St James' Park.
Last season 0-1
Odds: Newcastle 13/10, Draw 12/5, West Ham 12/5
An interesting match in prospect as Sam Allardyce returns to St James’ Park with his West Ham side, but former Toon striker Andy Carroll isn’t amongst the travelling squad as he is still recovering from an ankle injury but Kevin Nolan returns to his former club. West Ham will also be without George McCartney for the trip to the North East.
Allardyce has urged his players to build on their winning start to the season after their 2-0 win over Cardiff but he thinks his side will be in for a tough test.
He said: “We have to be 100 per cent focused and we have to improve our away form from last season, starting with Saturday's game at Newcastle.
“First game of the season at St James' Park and the fans will lift the players, so we will have to be on top form to make sure we get a result."
Injuries seem to be mounting for Alan Pardew at the moment with new signing Loic Remy not expected to play any part in a Newcastle shirt until next weekend whilst Jonas Gutierrez misses out because of a hamstring injury picked up during Monday night’s 4-0 defeat at Manchester City.
All eyes will be on Newcastle’s selection as to whether Yohan Cabaye will be selected after Pardew revealed his ‘head was turned’ after an offer from Arsenal, but Newcastle could have David Santon returning from injury which will be a welcome boost for the defence as Steven Taylor starts his three match ban for being sent off against Manchester City.
Newcastle will be hoping that Papiss Cisse can get amongst the goals in order to get his season up and running, and the pace of the side could give the Hammers’ a worry, whilst West Ham will look to be dangerous in wide areas and cause problems for Newcastle in the air.
Another difficult game to call, but Newcastle are fancied a bit more to grab all three points.
Last time they met
West Ham 0-0 Newcastle
A game where Newcastle stopped the rot in their bid to stave off relegation after their 6-0 home hammering by Liverpool the week before. Newcastle had the better of the first half whilst West Ham had the better of the second, but as the scoreline indicates, there wasn’t an awful lot to report.
image: © Ben Sutherland