Newcastle United face Arsenal in their final home game of the season on Monday night.
It’s been a remarkable campaign for the Magpies, starting with despair but ending with real optimism.
Eddie Howe’s side have nothing to really play for, but that’s not the case for our opponents. Arsenal are still aiming to finish in the top four, and need to bounce back after a humiliating defeat to rivals Tottenham.
Newcastle’s work is done though, so who will Howe pick as the Magpies look to go out in style?
Kieran Trippier predicted to start and captain Newcastle
Kieran Trippier made his return off the bench last week and is pushing for a start. And we think he’ll get it, replacing Emil Krafth at right-back.
Not only that, but we also expect him to wear the captain’s armband.
That’s because we predict Fabian Schar will replace skipper Jamaal Lascelles in the heart of defence. The Swiss centre-back limped off against Liverpool and was rested at the Etihad.
But he should return on Monday night, playing alongside Dan Burn.
Matt Targett will continue at left-back in what is set to be his final home game as a Toon player. Hopefully that isn’t the case and we sign him permanently this summer.
Callum Wilson in for Chris Wood vs Arsenal
We also saw Callum Wilson make his long awaited return last week. He came off the bench and looked lively, and should have really scored. However, he was denied by the onrushing Ederson.
Hopefully he gets more chances against Arsenal and he can add to his tally of six. Despite not starting a game since December, Wilson is still our top scorer.
His return to the starting XI should force Chris Wood back to the bench, who’s probably still disappointed he didn’t score against Man City.
Predicted XI to face Arsenal: Dubravka; Trippier, Schar, Burn, Targett; Almiron, Longstaff, Bruno, Joelinton, Saint-Maximin; Wilson.