Everton vs Newcastle United Preview: Blues searching for first win in over a month against soaring Magpies

Everton vs Newcastle United Preview: Blues searching for first win in over a month against soaring Magpies

A preview of the Monday Night Football clash between Everton and Newcastle United at Goodison Park.

Connor Bennett

Everton welcome Newcastle United to Goodison Park on Monday night, looking to pick up their first win in over a month.

Sam Allardyce’s side haven’t picked up three points since their visit to Stoke City and performances have looked flat since.

In the opposite dug-out, Rafa Benitez’s Magpies have found themselves soaring following a run of four games unbeaten - with four successive wins.

However, he’ll have to overcome a slight run of dominance from the Toffees in meetings between the two sides as Newcastle have only beaten Everton once in their last five meetings.

Neither manager will be expecting to get the warmest reception from the Goodison Park crowd.

Allardyce stated he has ‘nothing but respect’ for his former employers on Friday morning but his lack of popularity with his current employers will also see him draw some flack from both sets of supporters - win, lose or draw.

Recent meetings

The two sides met earlier this season in December as Allardyce’s side secured Everton’s first win away from home since January of the previous season.

A solitary first-half Wayne Rooney goal was enough to snap that rotten run and lift the Blues to three points.

However, they lived dangerously throughout the win and the Magpies could have snatched at least a point if it weren’t for the woodwork of Jordan Pickford’s goal.

Both Mikel Merino and Matt Ritchie agonisingly saw efforts rattle the woodwork to no avail.

When they last met at Goodison, Roberto Martinez’s Blues picked up a 3-0 win thanks to two late penalties from Ross Barkley.

Aaron Lennon, now of Burnley, opened the scoring inside the opening half hour but Everton struggled to see off Steve McClaren’s Magpies and needed two late spot kicks from the also now departed Barkley.

The win, at the beginning of February 2016, was the Blues first home victory since November and kept Newcastle inside the bottom three.

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A look at: Newcastle United

After some early season struggles, Newcastle have turned their campaign around are hotly on the Blues’ tails in tenth.

Benitez’s men haven’t been beaten since their last trip to Merseyside when they were beaten 2-0 by Liverpool.

The form of, in particular, players like Jonjo Shelvey and captain Jamaal Lascelles has helped the Magpies soar in recent weeks and put them in position for a top-half finish.

A win on Monday night would see them leapfrog Everton into ninth and stretch their unbeaten run to five games.

Confidence will be high after their last time out when they overturned an early deficit to beat Arsenal 2-1 at St James’ Park.

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Team News

Everton have a relatively full bill of health despite missing three first-team players through long-term injuries.

Mason Holgate could return to the matchday squad after overcoming a knock.

Gylfi Sigurdsson is progressing in his rehab but it will be tough and go if he returns before the end of the season.

Newcastle will be without former Everton man Christian Atsu through injury but the former Blues loanee is their only injury concern.

Islam Slimani is still yet to make his first start for Benitez’s side despite making two substitute appearances and could feature against the Blues.

Everton: Pickford, Coleman, Baines, Keane, Jagielka, Schneiderlin, Gueye, Rooney, Bolasie, Walcott, Tosun.

Newcastle: Dubravka, Yedlin, Dummett, Lascelles, Lejune, Diame, Shelvey, Ritchie, Kenedy, Perez, Gayle.

Match Day stats

  1. Everton have won only one of their last six Monday games at Goodison - one win, two draws, three defeats.

  2. There have been three red cards shown in the last four meetings between the two sides, however, they have all been issued to Newcastle players.

  3. The Magpies haven’t scored against the Blues in their last four meetings - with Everton winning by scorelines of 1-0, 3-0, 1-0, 3-0.