Newcastle’s upcoming ‘must-win’ fixtures against Watford and Bournemouth couldn’t have come at a worse time for the Toon.

Both teams are in blistering form right now and are quickly moving up the Premier League table in direct contrast to Newcastle.

A few weeks ago, Newcastle fans were looking forward to these more ‘winnable’ fixtures after a tough start to the season.

But a shock loss to Brighton and lucky draw to Southampton in the past fortnight has meant they are still winless after 10 games.

(Photo by Serena Taylor/Newcastle United via Getty Images)

The Magpies now desperately need a win before the international break, but these next two fixtures are no longer looking so ‘winnable’.

Why Newcastle must fear Watford and Bournemouth

The Hornets come to St James’ Park on Saturday on the back of two straight wins and they’ll be looking to make it three after a strong start to the campaign.

They currently sit in 7th place in the table and boast arguably the most in-form central midfield partnership in the Premier League with Etienne Capoue and Abdoulaye Doucoure.

Given how much Newcastle are struggling for possession in midfield, the two French Hornets may well dominate the proceedings on Saturday.

(Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

Even more daunting for Newcastle though is the following fixture against Bournemouth who are now 6th.

The Cherries are currently undefeated in their last four matches and have scored nine goals in that time.

They are scoring for fun, and no one outside the top four has scored more than them this season (19).

Last week Watford and Bournemouth also punished Newcastle’s fellow strugglers in the bottom three of the Premier League table.

Watford eased past Huddersfield in a 3-0 victory and Bournemouth similarly dispatched a struggling Fulham side to also win 3-0.

These results should serve as a warning to Newcastle that these teams are both pushing for new heights this season. Neither intends to be simply aiming for that elusive 40 points the Magpies so often desire.

They will be coming to St James’ Park for all three points.

The positives

Despite their current form, both sides have shown weaknesses against poorer teams which Newcastle can take confidence from.

Watford only scored one goal in a draw with Fulham earlier this season; a Fulham side who have conceded a shocking 28 goals in 10 matches.

Benitez can be confident then that his defensive tactics and superior back line to Fulham may be able keep out Watford.

As for Bournemouth, they fell to a shock 4-0 defeat against Burnley several weeks ago which Rafa must study intensely.

(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Burnley were similarly without a win in 10 games (including last season) and were bottom of the table at the time.

Benitez has moulded Newcastle in to a hard-to-beat team in the line of Burnley and so perhaps Bournemouth will also struggle to breakdown The Magpies.

If Newcastle can just manage to score against one of these teams, they may well be able to hang on for that vital first victory.

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