Sports Mole previews Tuesday’s EFL Cup clash between Brentford and Newcastle United, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Brentford face Newcastle United on Tuesday evening looking to reach the EFL Cup semi-finals for the first time in their history.
While the Bees are unbeaten in their last 13 matches in the Championship, Newcastle have gone two games without success in the Premier League.
Having failed to lift any major silverware since 1955, winning this season’s EFL Cup would represent one of the biggest achievements in Newcastle United’s history.
Nevertheless, despite ambitions to go further in this competition, Steve Bruce would have preferred to have one fewer fixture on the club’s schedule after the recent coronavirus outbreak.
Bruce has spoken about the lingering effects that it has had on some players, and the game in West London will take second priority behind ensuring that none of his squad are pushed too hard ahead of the Christmas period.
From a competitive perspective, Bruce will want the Magpies to get back on track after two top-flight games without success, the latest game ending with Fulham in a 1-1 draw.
Newcastle benefitted from a controversial penalty decision to earn a share of the spoils, one which has kept them in contention for the mid-table positions.
Thomas Frank‘s Brentford squad are also eager for a few days off after remarkably coming through a relentless second-tier schedule with a 13-match unbeaten record.
While seven of those games have been draws, recording almost two points per game over a two-month period has put the Bees close to the Championship automatic places.
Frank will be relieved that more members of his squad are beginning to help Ivan Toney in the scoring charts, but there is little doubting that the former Newcastle youngster remains the spearhead of this attack.
Brentford are looking to defeat Premier League opposition for a fourth time this season after already progressing past Southampton, West Bromwich Albion and Fulham.
Brentford EFL Cup form: DWDW
Brentford form (all competitions): WDDWDW
Newcastle United EFL Cup form: WWD
Newcastle United form (all competitions): LLWWLD
Brentford will be able to call upon Ethan Pinnock after the defender served a one-match suspension.
Goalkeeper Luke Daniels could be given an opportunity between the sticks, while Christian Norgaard is in contention after a spell out through injury.
Bruce will almost certainly make several changes to his Newcastle XI with Dwight Gayle and Andy Carroll pushing for a start in attack.
Mark Gillespie, Jacob Murphy and Ryan Fraser are also in line to be presented with chances in the team.
Brentford possible starting lineup:
Daniels; Fosu-Henry, Goode, Pinnock, Henry; Marcondes, Norgaard, Jensen; Ghoddos, Forss, Canos
Newcastle United possible starting lineup:
Gillespie; Yedlin, Fernandez, Clark, Ritchie; Murphy, Shelvey, Longstaff, Fraser; Carroll, Gayle
We say: Brentford 2-1 Newcastle United
After the recent coronavirus outbreak at the club, another fixture on the schedule is not ideal for the Magpies. With that in mind, we feel that Brentford could take the scalp of another Premier League scalp courtesy of a late goal at their home ground.
Top betting tip
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