Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is aiming to end an unwanted run of six straight Premier League matches without finding the net in the first-half.
The Gunners have made an inconsistent start to the season, winning just six of 15 matches and lying outside the top four.
One of the underlying problems so far this season is Wenger’s side’s stuttering start to matches and inability to get their noses in front early on in a bid to control matches.
Their half-time record is terrible to say the least, such that if games were to finish after 45 minutes the North Londoners would be in a lowly 14th position with just two wins, 15 points and a negative three goal difference.
At home, it makes for tough reading as the Emirates outfit have scored just two goals in the opening 45 minutes all season, with both of those games resulting in a half-time score of 1-1.
Speaking ahead of the visit of Newcastle United, Wenger admitted that he is well aware of this poor record, but he remains philosophical as he explains the timing of the goals aren’t important as long as his team emerges winners.
“It’s not on purpose, it’s just because that’s the way the game is,” he told Arsenal’s official website. “The most important thing is not when you want to win it, it’s when you win the game.
“It cost us against Manchester United, for example. We had many chances in the first half and didn’t score.
“That’s why it’s very important that we are tight defensively because we know we will score. The games where we didn’t score, we didn’t concede in the first hour and we won the game after.”
The Gunners go into the clash with the Magpies lying in sixth spot in the table, four points behind fellow Londoners West Ham United in fourth.
It’s a tricky game for Wenger and his men given the visitors excellent form, although recent form between the two teams shows the North Londoners have the edge, winning the previous five encounters.