We look ahead to this Premier League clash between two of the top three sides in the table with our Newcastle vs Arsenal prediction and stats preview.
Newcastle vs Arsenal: Quick Stats
- Arsenal are tipped to win this game against Newcastle with the Opta supercomputer giving them a 40.1% chance of victory.
- The Gunners have been involved in just two 0-0 draws in the Premier League since the start of 2022 – both saw Nick Pope in goal for their opponents.
- Alexander Isak has been involved in eight goals (seven goals, one assist) in his last nine Premier League games for Newcastle.
Two of the top three Premier League teams meet at St James’ Park on Sunday, with Newcastle United hosting Arsenal. The Gunners could come into this match four points behind league leaders Man City, with Pep Guardiola’s side hosting struggling Leeds United just over 24 hours before.
Following the 0-0 between the clubs earlier this season, Newcastle will be looking to go unbeaten in both league meetings with Arsenal in a single campaign for the first time since 2010-11.
Newcastle won this exact fixture 2-0 at home last season thanks to a strike from Bruno Guimaraes and an own goal from Arsenal’s Ben White. The Gunners haven’t lost consecutive league games away at St James’ Park since January 1996, losing their first three Premier League matches at the stadium without scoring a single goal.
Overall, in Premier League history, Arsenal have kept 29 clean sheets against Newcastle, including one in the goalless draw in London on 3 January. No side has kept more against a single opponent in EPL history.
The pre-match line-up news for Newcastle is headlined by Allan Saint-Maximin’s race to be fit for kick-off on Sunday following a thigh injury. Even if deemed fit, it’s likely he’ll take a place on the bench alongside England international Callum Wilson, with Eddie Howe opting for a front three that includes Joelinton and Jacob Murphy. Other absentees for the Magpies include defenders Jamaal Lascelles and Emil Krafth, while Sean Longstaff is unlikely to be fit enough and will join his brother Matt in the sidelines.
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta made three changes to his starting XI in the midweek win over Chelsea, with central defender Jakub Kiwior making his first Premier League start – he’s expected to continue in the side with the continued absence of William Saliba. They’ll be sweating on Kiwior’s central defensive partner Gabriel, with the Brazilian coming off injured against the Blues on Tuesday.
Jorginho and Leandro Trossard also started in midweek, but both Gabriel Martinelli and Thomas Partey will be expected to return to the Gunners’ side on Sunday. Long-term absentees Takehiro Tomiyasu and Mohamed Elneny are out for the rest of the season.
Arsenal 0-0 Newcastle United: 3 January 2023 (Premier League)
Newcastle United frustrated Arsenal to a 0-0 draw in both sides’ opening Premier League match in 2023 at the Emirates Stadium on 3 January.
This game is just one of two Premier League 0-0 draws that Arsenal have been involved in since the start of 2022, and both have seen Nick Pope in the opposition goal – vs. Burnley in January 2022, as well as this match.
The game wasn’t the best spectacle, with Newcastle accused of wasting time and ‘managing the game’ by their opponents at full-time. Mikel Arteta was visibly upset at the lack of time added on at the end of the game, plus a penalty appeal waved away late on.
It was a scrappy affair, with only five shots on target overall. Aaron Ramsdale was largely untested, with Callum Wilson having the only attempt on target by a Newcastle player 10 minutes into the match.
The match saw nine yellow cards given out by referee Andy Madley, with no Premier League game in 2022-23 seeing more.
It’s been a fine season for Newcastle United. They have won eight of their last nine Premier League games (L1), including each of the last three by an aggregate score of 13-3, while their 18 wins overall this season is their most in a single top-flight campaign since 2011-12 (19).
After a blip in the 3-0 away defeat to Aston Villa on 15 April, Newcastle have enjoyed three consecutive wins over Tottenham Hotspur, Everton and Newcastle, with 13 goals scored across those games – Callum Wilson netting in all three. As a result, they surged up the Opta Power Rankings in April.
Since he was named as manager on 8 November 2021, Eddie Howe’s home record as Newcastle boss in the Premier League has been excellent. He’s picked up 63 points from a possible 90 (2.10 per game) and only Liverpool (one), Man City (two) and Man Utd (two) have lost fewer games at home in the EPL over this period – not bad considering the Magpies were in 19th place and level on points (five in 11 games) with bottom side Norwich City when he arrived.
Arsenal ended a four-game winless streak in the Premier League with their 3-1 London derby win over Chelsea on Tuesday night, thanks to goals from Martin Ødegaard (two) and Gabriel Jesus. But the damage had been done in their quest for the title. Three consecutive score draws versus Liverpool, West Ham United and Southampton – the first two seeing them give away 2-0 leads – following by a 4-1 defeat at Man City saw them eventually lose top spot to Guardiola’s side. Arsenal won six points from five games in April, Manchester City won all 15 available.
Despite their recent poor form, Arsenal are on a strong scoring streak, scoring in a current league-best 14 games in a row. Overall, they have only failed to score in three of their last 36 Premier League matches overall, but two of these have come in their most recent meetings with Newcastle: a 2-0 loss away in May 2022 and the 0-0 draw at the Emirates Stadium earlier this year.
Newcastle United: Alexander Isak
It’s been over two years since we profiled Alexander Isak on Opta Analyst as a young forward at La Liga club Real Sociedad. We knew he was of top quality back then, but some football fans are only just realising the high ceiling to his talent.
With seven goals and an assist in his nine Premier League appearances, it seems like the Swedish forward has now acclimatized to life in the north-east of England and is ready to help fire Newcastle to a top-four finish and a UEFA Champions League spot for 2023-24. Only Callum Wilson (eight) has scored more goals than Isak over this period for Newcastle, while he’s had the most take-ons (37) of any player and only Joe Willock (16) has completed as many as he has.
Arsenal: Martin Ødegaard
Whilst Arsenal have struggled in the Premier League since the start of April (picking up nine points in six games), Martin Ødegaard’s personal performances have been commendable. The Norwegian has been involved in five goals in his last six games, with four goals and an assist. Overall, that’s now 21 Premier League goal involvements (nine goals, 12 assists) this season – only Bukayo Saka (24) has more for the club.
The Norwegian has been a key factor in Arsenal’s great season, and as such was named this week in our FIFA 23 Premier League Team of the Season. His range of passing is one reason for that, with a team-high 143 progressive passes this season in the league, while he’s also completed 11 through balls to team-mates in the Premier League across 2022-23 – every other Arsenal player combined has completed 27, with no single team-mate on more than five.
Ødegaard leads Arsenal players for open-play attacking sequence involvements per 90 (6.7) in the Premier League this season, showing his importance to Arteta’s side not only in chance creation and scoring, but in the build-up to shots too.
Newcastle vs Arsenal Prediction
The Opta supercomputer rates Arsenal as favourites to win this match, with a 40.1% chance of victory at St James’ Park on Sunday. Newcastle are far from ruled out, however, with a 31.4% chance of winning. This promises to be a closely fought encounter.
Lose this game and you feel like Arsenal’s hopes for the Premier League title are over for another season. Their chances of pipping Manchester City are currently at just 6.0%, with Man City having a point more, a game in hand and a game against leaky Leeds United on Saturday. With this match on Sunday, Arsenal will know how Man City have fared by the time they play, so if City do slip up, it makes this game even bigger.
Whatever the outcome for Arsenal in this match, they have already qualified for the UEFA Champions League next season – something that Newcastle are odds on to replicate. The Opta supercomputer gives Eddie Howe’s side a 96.1% chance of finishing in the top four now, with the Magpies looking extremely likely to play in the UCL for the first time since 2003-04. In fact, the top four looks sewn up, with Manchester United’s chance at 91.9% well ahead of both Liverpool (10.4%) and Brighton (1.7%).
Even with a win in this match, it’s unlikely that Newcastle can make up a 13-point deficit on the Gunners to pip them to second place – the Opta supercomputer gives them just a 0.12% chance of doing that.