Newcastle United vs Leicester City preview: How to watch, kick-off time, team news, predicted lineups, and ones to watch
Youri Tielemans vies with Joelinton for possession | Photo: Getty/ Lindsey Parnaby

Leicester City travel to Newcastle United on Sunday afternoon knowing that a win will take them to within a point of the Premier League's top two.

Back-to-back draws against Manchester United and Crystal Palace over the festive period have allowed opposition rivals to close the gap on the Foxes, who know three points could go a long way to achieving their goal of European football for next year.

With a happy record at St James' Park in recent years - winning four of their last five trips to the North East - the East Midlanders will look to begin 2021 with a winning start.

Team News

Captain Jamaal Lascelles and striker Allan Saint-Maximin will play no part for Steve Bruce's side on Sunday, with the pair still feeling the effects of the club's recent coronavirus outbreak. 

Ryan Fraser is also out with a groin problem whilst Paul Dummett may not be back in time after he missed Wednesday's draw with Liverpool through illness. Issac Hayden will miss the game through suspension.

Brendan Rodgers admitted he will have to check on the fitness of James Maddison and Wesley Fofana ahead of the visit to the North East.

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Both missed out on the draw at Palace with knee injuries, but have been training so could be included. Caglar Soyuncu was an unused substitute at Selhurst Park so could return to the starting line-up if required.

Cengiz Under (hamstring) and Ricardo Pereira (groin) are the only definite absentees.

Predicted Line-Ups

Newcastle United: Darlow; Yedlin, Fernandez, Schar, Clark, Ritchie; Murphy, Shelvey, Longstaff, Joelinton; Wilson.

Leicester City: Schmeichel; Justin, Fofana, Evans, Soyuncu, Castagne; Ndidi, Tielemans; Maddison, Barnes, Vardy.

Last Meeting

It was just over a year ago since the two sides met on the first day of 2020 at the same ground, where Leicester comfortably won 3-0.

Ayoze Perez opened the scoring against his former side with a deflected effort before James Maddison's 25-yard rocket put the Foxes well in the ascendancy before half-time.

Local lad Hamza Choudhury made sure of the win in the final moments of the game, scoring his first top-flight goal with a side-footed effort that cannoned off the crossbar to send the Foxes home with a vital three points.

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Ones to Watch

Karl Darlow - Newcastle United

Goalkeeper Karl Datlow arrives into the game after a spectacular display against league leaders Liverpool.

The former Nottingham Forest shot-stopper frustrated the champions all night with some fantastic saves and even though he is normally the back-up option for regular number one Martin Dubravka, it is likely that the 30-year-old will keep his place in the starting line-up.

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Youri Tielemans - Leicester City

Quite often this season, when Youri Tielemans plays well, so do Leicester City.

This year has seen him play a deeper role in midfield alongside Wilfred Ndidi and it is one that has benefitted him majorly.

The Belgian has the ability to dictate the tempo of the game and with his killer instinct style of pass, could be the key to unlocking a stubborn Newcastle defence.

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Pre-Match Thoughts

Following his side's impressive draw against Liverpool, Newcastle boss Steve Bruce's attention immediately turned to Leicester where he highlighted the threat of Jamie Vardy as well as their form on the road.

He said: "Away from home, maybe it suits them better because they can play slightly on the counter-attack and if you leave spaces in behind, Jamie Vardy, who seems to be getting younger rather than older, is as good as you're going to play against as a centre forward.

"He's bright and alive but right the way through the team they've got some very good players. However, if we play like we did against Liverpool then we've proved we can match anybody in the league."

With Leicester currently sitting in the UEFA Champions League places, Foxes boss Rodgers has set his players the target of qualifying for Europe for consecutive seasons for the first time in the club's history.

The Northern Irishman said: “I’m always honest and let you know what we’re thinking, and our thinking is if we can have European football again next season, with the stage that the team is at in its development, that would be a great success.

“The ambition is there, the spirit is there, and the players are developing. For us to be in that position another year down the line shows that the consistency now is starting to improve, so that’s something that pleases me."

How to Watch

The game will be broadcast live on Sky Sports Premier League and Main Event from 2pm on Sunday; kick-off at 2.15pm.  ​​​​​​​