Preview: Nottingham Forest vs. Newcastle United – prediction, team news, lineups

Newcastle United face a tricky Nottingham side who have been pretty solid on home soil. Seeking to boost their chances of securing Champions League football for next season, Newcastle United travel to the City Ground to face Nottingham Forest in the Premier League on Friday night. While the Tricky Trees have not lost a league game on home soil since October, the Magpies are still searching for their first top-flight away victory in 2023.

Team News:

Nottingham Forest were dealt a triple injury blow last weekend, with Wayne Hennessey sustaining a knee problem during the warm-up prior to the defeat at Spurs before Brennan Johnson (groin) and Chris Wood (thigh) – the latter of whom a January signing from Newcastle – picked up injuries in the second half.

All three players are major doubts for Friday’s contest along with Gustavo Scarpa, who recently returned to the UK from Brazil after dealing with a personal matter, while Dean Henderson, Taiwo Awoniyi, Willy Boly, Scott McKenna, Omar Richards and Giulian Biancone all remain in the treatment room.

Cheikhou Kouyate (thigh) has a slim chance of returning after taking part in training this week, while Moussa Niakhate featured in the matchday squad last weekend for the first time since August following a lengthy spell out with a hamstring injury, and the centre-back could be involved on Friday.

In the potential absence of Johnson and Wood, Emmanuel Dennis and Andre Ayew will be pushing to start in attack along with Morgan Gibbs-White and Jesse Lingard, while Ryan Yates and Danilo will be hoping for a recall in centre-midfield.

As for Newcastle, Howe has confirmed that Anthony Gordon will miss the trip to the City Ground due to an ankle injury and the winger may not return until after the international break. Emil Krafth, meanwhile, remains out with a long-term knee problem.

Joelinton will serve the final game of his two-match suspension on Friday, so a midfield trio of Sean Longstaff, Bruno Guimaraes and Joe Willock is set to remain intact, while Ryan Fraser has been banished to the club’s Under-21s, with Howe citing that he only wants ‘committed’ players in his first-team squad.

After scoring the winning goal as a substitute last weekend, Almiron – who has scored 30% of Newcastle’s Premier League goals this season – will be hoping to force his way back into the first XI ahead of Jacob Murphy, but Wilson may have to settle for a place on the bench once again following Isak’s strong performance up front against Wolves.

Nottingham Forest possible starting lineup:

Navas; Aurier, Worrall, Felipe, Lodi; Yates, Shelvey, Freuler; Lingard, Gibbs-White; Dennis

Newcastle United possible starting lineup:

Pope; Trippier, Botman, Schar, Burn; S. Longstaff, Guimaraes, Willock; Almiron, Isak, Saint-Maximin

Prediction: Nottingham Forest 0-2 Newcastle United

Forest have fared much better on home soil so far this season and will hope that the City Ground faithful can spur them on once again as they bid to climb away from the relegation zone.

However, the potential absence of Johnson and Wood could see the hosts struggle to pose a threat in front of goal, and with Newcastle heading into Friday’s game in buoyant mood following last weekend’s victory, we can see the Magpies edging out the Tricky Trees in a tight affair.

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