MATCH FACTS: Head-to-Head

MATCH FACTS
Head-to-head

Rafael Benitez is very successful at setting his team up to be difficult to beat at home to the Premier League superpowers.

PREDICTION: NewCastle1-1Chelsea

Newcastle are undefeated in five Premier League home matches against Chelsea, winning four.
However, their 3-0 victory on the final day of last season was the Magpies’ only success in six meetings in all competitions (D1, L4).
Chelsea have lost 11 Premier League fixtures at Newcastle, only sustaining a greater number of defeats at Arsenal (12) and Liverpool (13).
Newcastle United

Newcastle could lose both of their season-opening Premier League home matches for just the second time, having lost to Manchester United and Birmingham City in 2003.
The Magpies have won just once in seven Premier League outings, losing five and drawing one.
Their average passing accuracy this season is just 65%. Only Cardiff, with 62%, have been more wasteful.
Newcastle are one goal away from becoming the sixth club to concede 2,000 in the top flight.
Chelsea

Chelsea have won four of their last five Premier League away matches, with their only loss coming at Newcastle in May.
They could extend their own Premier League record of having won their first three matches of a season on eight occasions.

Maurizio Sarri can become the fifth Chelsea manager to triumph in his opening three fixtures, following Antonio Conte, Carlo Ancelotti, Guus Hiddink and Jose Mourinho.
Eden Hazard has created two goals this season, despite playing a total of 45 minutes as a substitute.
Cesar Azpilicueta has now set up seven of Alvaro Morata’s 12 Premier League goals following his assist against Arsenal. That record is only bettered in the Premier League by Matt Le Tissier assisting six of Ken Monkou’s 10 goals at Southampton.

TEAM NEWS
On-loan Newcastle winger Kenedy, who missed a 96th-minute penalty in the draw at Cardiff, is ineligible against his parent club.

Christian Atsu and Jacob Murphy are both options to deputise, while DeAndre Yedlin has recovered from a knee injury to return at right-back.

Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri is expected to give Eden Hazard his first start of the season after two substitute cameos.

Cesc Fabregas remains out, while Michy Batshuayi has joined Valencia on loan.

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez: “We are talking about one of the top sides. They have a good manager – I know Sarri well from his experience in Italy.

“The main factor for us is the attitude of the players – their work rate, their mentality. You have to try to win, and try to win using the brain – not just the heart.”

Chelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri on whether Eden Hazard will play: “I think that Eden is ready for 50 or 60 minutes, I don’t know about 90 minutes, but he can start.

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“I am happy with him if he wants to play. I think it’s the right way to think for him but I have to think for everybody.”

While they probably didn’t deserve it, Newcastle really should have won at Cardiff last weekend. Kenedy’s penalty miss was a huge blow to Rafael Benitez. Those extra points could be very important come the end of the season.

Chelsea hope that Eden Hazard is ready to resume a central role, having being limited to brief cameos so far under Maurizio Sarri.

A slow start is nothing new to Newcastle. This is the sixth successive top-flight campaign they’ve failed to win either of their opening two league games.

Things might get worse before they get any better for Benitez. After Chelsea, Newcastle play Manchester City away next.

Newcastle
12Dubravka
22Yedlin
18Fernandez
5Schär
2Clark
3Dummett
7Murphy
4Ki Sung-yueng
10Diamé
11Ritchie
9Rondón
Substitutes
13Muto
17Pérez
21Joselu
25Sterry
26Darlow
30Atsu
36Longstaff

Chelsea
1Arrizabalaga
28Azpilicueta
2Rüdiger
30David Luiz
3Alonso
7Kanté
5Jorginho
17Kovacic
11Pedro
29Morata
10E Hazard

Substitutes
8Barkley
12Loftus-Cheek
13Caballero
18Giroud
21Zappacosta
22Willian
27Christensen

Referee: Paul Tierney

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