Saturday, 16 July 2016

Bohemian F.C. vs Newcastle United Club Friendly Match Preview And Prediction - July 16, 2016

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Rafa Benitez surprised most observers by deciding to stick with the Magpies despite relegation from the Premier League last term. His decision was a much needed boost for Toon fans who are now somewhat optimistic about this new era even though it will have to start in the Championship.

Newcastle have already lost Andros Townsend and have received interest in a few of their other players but they have recruited pretty well with Dwight Gayle and Matt Ritchie coming in and they are strong favourites to bounce back to the top flight at the first attempt. Despite going down their form at the end of last season was good and they took 12 points from their final 6 fixtures with the Spaniard at the helm so he’ll be hoping some of that confidence carries over into this their first pre-season game.

Bohemians meanwhile are in the middle of their season in Ireland so clearly should hold a significant advantage in terms of fitness. They are in good form too and have gone 7 matches without defeat in all competitions after a tough run of defeats. Their recent run of good results has been based on solid defence with just 2 goals conceded in those matches so they should be able to at least keep the Magpies at bay for a while here although the fact that they play in the league in a big derby game the night before means they are likely to make plenty of changes here.

The visitors clearly possess far the greater quality. They have few players ready to play 90 minutes and the size of their squad means they are likely to make plenty of half-time changes here but they will be up for the game as they try to start the new season on the right note. Bohemians are organised and capable enough to avoid a severe thrashing but given they are likely to be well under-strength here backing Newcastle to win 3-0 at 13/2 looks a solid punt.

Newcastle are unbeaten in 6 matches (3 wins & 3 draws). Bohemians have kept clean sheets in 5 of their last 7 games but haven't beaten English opposition since 2010 when they won 2-1 in a friendly against Aston Villa.

Bohemians have a local derby against Shamrock the previous evening in the LOI so they are likely to bring in some fresh legs and a few younger players here.

Rafa Benitez could hand debuts to Matt Ritchie, Matz Sels and Dwight Gayle while Rob Elliot is available again.

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