Newcastle United take on Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium tonight, with Steve Bruce under huge pressure to deliver a positive result.
The Magpies are slipping ever closer to the relegation zone having gone six games without victory in the Premier League.
At the moment the club have taken 19 points from 17 games and are seven points clear of Fulham in 18th.
Tonight’s game is huge after the dismal performance and result against Sheffield United last week, which led to the loudest calls yet for Bruce to be removed as manager.
It’s also a chance to get even with Arsenal, who dumped Newcastle out of the FA Cup.
On social media, some Newcastle fans have been reacting to the starting XI that Bruce has named for the crunch clash.
It appears the five-man defence system has been ditched, with Jamaal Lascelles partnering Ciaran Clark at the back, with Emile Krafth and Jamal Lewis as traditional full-backs.
Jonjo Shelvey and Matty Longstaff are in midfield, and there are starts for big-money signings Joelinton and Miguel Almiron, with Andy Carroll partnering Callum Wilson up top.
While there were still plenty of fans unhappy, Bruce’s selections have some fans cautiously optimistic:
The gloves are firmly off
— Jack 🇸🇦 (@jchaytor16) January 18, 2021
The gloves are off
— Daniel Barfield (@_DanielBarfield) January 18, 2021
Gloves aren’t half off here mind, Shelvey and Carroll 😍😍
— LENNON🎧 (@NUFCLennon) January 18, 2021
— 𝘾𝙤𝙣𝙣𝙤𝙧🏁🇸🇦(dm for fb) (@ConnorNUFC_) January 18, 2021
The gloves are off. Are we going to throw punches though?
— Shevas (@ShevasNUFC) January 18, 2021
Can’t complain at this lineup. Fair play👏🏼 Now up to the players to show their worth. Howay the lads⚫️⚪️ #NUFC
— Ollie Maxwell (@olliemaxwell14) January 18, 2021
Not a bad lineup to be fair. HWTL
— Euan (@euanmccubbin17) January 18, 2021
gloves are off boys
— R⚫️⚪️ (@reegnufc) January 18, 2021
Finally doing it his way? Solid lineup tbf
— Al (@NUFCAl_) January 18, 2021