Newcastle United head into tomorrow’s clash with Crystal Palace looking for their first win for four Premier League games. The Magpies have failed to score a goal in their last three and something needs to change.
Steve Bruce’s men travel to Selhurst Park with just a point more than the Eagles and defeat tomorrow could see them start to look over their shoulder somewhat.
The Daily Star this week reported that Bruce might be tempted to change things around in attack. Joelinton has scored just one Premier League goal since his £40 million move from Hoffenheim and could be replaced by Dwight Gayle.
The 29-year-old former Palace man doesn’t have a league goal to his name this season; although he has largely been used as a substitute and spent some time out injured.
Bruce will perhaps be missing a trick this weekend by making a like-for-like swap, and he should instead consider playing Gayle and Joelinton in tandem.
It would probably involve Bruce abandoning his strategy of deploying three central defenders but something has to give somewhere.
Newcastle aren’t scoring goals and on Sunday they shipped four at Arsenal. Supporters want to see a response and perhaps more crucially they want to see their team have a go at winning games.
Both Joelinton and Gayle need a goal. The big-money Brazilian scored 11 goals last season, but he was largely utilised with another striker.
Gayle isn’t really a man fond of leading the line on his own either and a game against Palace makes perfect sense for Bruce to take the shackles off.
Simply swapping and changing players and hoping for success, probably isn’t going to work.
Both Gayle and Joelinton have shown during their careers that they know where the net is. They haven’t become bad players overnight but they need some confidence.
Bruce can make a statement this weekend to the club’s supporters. One that suggests he is willing to adapt and he could do that by utilising both Gayle and Joelinton in a two-pronged attack that could work a treat.