The Magpies will be without defender Paul Dummet and goalkeeper Martin Dubravka. Whilst this is a boost to West Ham, Karl Darlow is an able backup keeper. On the other hand, the Magpies’ star forwards Callum Wilson and Allan Saint-Maximin have recently returned to action and will be looking to start against West Ham. This will not be welcome news to Hammers fans, as Wilson has an affinity for scoring against us, and Saint-Maximin, on his day, is one of the most dangerous attackers in the league.
LLWDWW (Preseason Friendlies)
Newcastle had a mixed preseason, losing their first fixtures against York City and Harrogate Town. However, they did finish strongly with an impressive 3-0 victory over Premier League newcomers Norwich City which would have set them in good stead coming into this game. Their uptick in form came with the return of their key players.
West Ham Visit Newcastle for Season Opener | Match Preview
Callum Wilson scored 12 goals and registered 5 assists despite only playing 26 games last season, highlighting what a threat he presents. He is certainly Newcastle’s most prolific player and has a history of scoring against West Ham – stopping him will be key.
Allan Saint-Maximin is another of Newcastle’s key attacking threats. A tricky winger who completed the third most successful dribbles in the 2020/21 season, the attacker terrorized the West Ham defense last time out.
Newcastle 1 – 2 West Ham
West Ham has shown in preseason that they can defeat some of the very best teams in Europe and will surely be confident of defeating Newcastle. However, Steve Bruce sets his side up to be very defensive and tough to beat, a style that the Hammers found hard to overcome last season, as demonstrated by the two losses the Magpies inflicted on them.
With Ogbonna likely out, a clean sheet may be harder to come by, especially when facing Wilson, though I predict that Moyes’ squad will have just enough to get this one over the line. Either way, the first goal will be crucial and could potentially decide the outcome of the match.