The first of two Super Sunday matches this afternoon takes us to the John Smith’s stadium as two promoted sides go head to head. Hosts Huddersfield will be looking to continue their momentum after an emphatic win over Crystal Palace last Saturday while Newcastle will be looking to get off the mark after defeat to Tottenham.
David Wagner’s men got off to a dream start last Saturday, one that was almost bordering on fantasy as they ran out 3-0 winners in South London. Not many people would have given them a chance of winning on the opening day let alone so comfortably.
It was also a result that saw Huddersfield top the table at the end of the night, unfortunately though their time at the top would end up being just over 24 hours as Manchester United surged to a 4-0 win over West Ham at Old Trafford this time last week.
Steve Mounié was the hero of the hour last Saturday as Huddersfield’s record signing paid back some of his transfer fee with a brace of goals. If there was ever a way to endear yourself to a new group of fans then that is exactly the way to do so.
If Mounié was the hero for Huddersfield then Jonjo Shelvey was most definitely the villain for Newcastle. Rafa Benitez’s men were very much holding their own against Tottenham and on the basis of the first half looked good value for a point at the end of the afternoon.
But Shelvey’s mindless stamp on Dele Alli right in front of Andre Marriner meant that the referee had no option to send off the somehow England international just minutes after the restart. With Tottenham then given numerical supremacy they never looked back from there and ran out eventual 2-0 winners.
Rafa Benitez would have undoubtedly had some choice words for the former Liverpool man after the final whistle as those actions were not befitting that of a club captain. He misses out due to suspensions and questions will be asked to whether or not he will be able to find his way into the team upon his return.
Newcastle also have issues at the back with Florian Lejuene and Paul Dummett out injured, they both had to come off in the first half against Tottenham and it will leave manager Rafa Benitez something of a defensive headache as will have to name a back four which is not resembling full strength.
With that being the case Huddersfield’s Aaron Mooy will once again look to provide the necessary service for Huddersfield’s attack. He was on hand to assist the first of Mounié’s goals last Saturday and will fancy his chances of doing so again.
Last week was something of a free hit for Newcastle and these are the games in which they will identify more realistic opportunities to get points on the board, while Huddersfield would have far exceeded even their wildest expectations last week. I think the two sides will cancel each other out, with it ending in a draw.
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— Dan Tracey (@dantracey1983) August 19, 2017