Kick Off: 1500, 14/01/2017
Stadium: Griffin Park
Newcastle travel to Brentford hit by suspensions, injuries and African Nations Cup absences as they look to get their bid for a quick return to the Premier League back on track.
The Bees aren’t up with the pace of their last two Championship campaigns but have shown signs of late that they could be a team to watch out for over the second half of the season.
A Look At Brentford’s Betting Odds
Last week’s FA Cup thrashing of Eastleigh maintained Brentford’s mini resurgence, with the Bees now having lost just one of their last seven matches – and that defeat only came when conceding a last-minute goal at Leeds.
Dean Smith must decide whether leading marksman Scott Hogan is in the right frame of mind to feature after continued transfer speculation linking him with a move to West Ham, but the hosts have been sharing the goals around a bit more of late anyway.
A recent 3-1 win at Birmingham is hard to fault and, although they rode their luck a bit when drawing with Norwich at Griffin Park, 91/100 for Brentford to avoid defeat here has a solid look to it.
A Look At Newcastle’s Betting Odds
Having looked a class apart at times in the Championship this season, Rafa Benitez will be keen to steady the ship following just one win in four matches, with 1-0 losses to Sheffield Wednesday and Blackburn damaging the Magpies’ title aspirations.
Losing Jonjo Shelvey to suspension has badly affected United’s fluency and he will still be missing from this fixture, while Chancel Mbemba, Mohamed Diame and Christian Atsu going off to the African Cup of Nations hardly helps matters.
With weather conditions tipped to be testing this weekend, 87/100 for under 2.5 goals could be worth a look, along with 9/10 that at least one of the teams fails to score in what may prove a scrappy encounter.
BRENTFORD 5-1 Eastleigh – Yoann Barbet (pen), Tom Field (2), Lasse Vibe, Romaine Sawyers
Birmingham 1-1 NEWCASTLE – Daryl Murphy
Head-to-head: Newcastle 3-1 Brentford
Team news: Brentford defender Andreas Bjelland is still a doubt with an ankle knock, while Rico Henry (shoulder), Lewis Macleod (knee) and Alan Judge (leg) remain sidelined. Newcastle are again missing midfielder Shelvey as he completes his five-match suspension. Striker Aleksandar Mitrovic suffered a nasty gash to his knee in the FA Cup, while Mbemba, Diame and Atsu are away on international duty.