- Manchester United’s haul of 30 points from road games is best in the Premier League
- 28 goals and 14 assists will be missing between Rooney and Remy
- Newcastle has five losses in their last seven home matches
Neither team will have their first-choice striker as Manchester United travels to St. James Park at 10am ET on NBCSN or live online at NBC Sports Live Extra.
David Moyes confirmed Wayne Rooney will be absent with a toe injury that could put his Champions League future at risk as well, and Alan Pardew will miss Loic Remy with an ankle injury.
Pardew admitted he has an “injury crisis” with the Magpies, with Moussa Sissokho, Mathieu Debuchy, and Tim Krul all missing out.
Newcastle are desperately fighting off Stoke City for a top-10 finish, as they’ve been outscored 8-1 in their last four fixtures and have allowed the Potters to climb closer.
For MUFC, their Premier League season is essentially a wash, with a top-four finish all but unattainable. Moyes will be much more focused on Wednesday’s second leg against Bayern Munich in the Champions League, with a tournament victory likely necessary to secure play next season.
Ryan Giggs, Alexander Buttner, and Antonio Valencia all picked up various injuries in the first leg, and while Moyes won’t want to risk too many of his players with knocks, he’ll want to keep the form going heading into the important midweek match.
What they’re saying:
Manchester United winger Ashley Young – “We’ve got to keep the momentum going. We want to take three points from the weekend into the second leg against Bayern and then see how things go”
David Moyes on possibly looking ahead – “I don’t think you can ever question the character of Manchester United; it’s engrained in the football club. The only thing we’re thinking about is the Newcastle game. We have to go there and put in a good performance and pick all three points up and build up a little bit of momentum.”
Alan Pardew on Newcastle goal shortage – “Somewhere down the line, we need to get goals and we’re very focused on that. But you need a foundation to score goals and our problem at Southampton last week was that we never had that. We’ve been working on the structure of the team to give Manchester United some problems. And hopefully Papiss can smash one in from 35 yards as well.”
This match has many variables. Manchester United will no doubt be looking forward to Wednesday, which could form this Newcastle match into a sort of trap game. Meanwhile, Newcastle are missing a multitude of important pieces. It’s hard to see Pardew giving United too much trouble, given the visitors’ recent form. I could see a smooth 3-0 United win, but it’s possible the home side pulls out an upset.