Newcastle v Watford betting tips: Vital points on the line in the north east
Preview and odds for Saturday’s Premier League clash
There is a key fixture in the Premier League battle for survival this weekend as Claudio Ranieri takes his relegation-threatened Hornets to the north east and we pick out some Newcastle v Watford betting tips.
The money-bags Magpies have started to spend some of the Saudi Arabian war chest but it is performances on the pitch which will ultimately decide their Premier League fate and they will need to quickly bounce back from a humiliating defeat in the FA Cup recently.
Saturday’s match at St James’ Park kicks off at 3pm.
Turmoil on Tyneside
For a week that started with optimism with the £12million signing of Kieran Trippier, it ended in bitter disappointment as the Magpies wilted under the pressure of heavy favouritism in their FA Cup banana skin with Cambridge United.
The League One outfit produced the textbook cup upset to leave Newcastle manager Eddie Howe with plenty to ponder before a return to Premier League action this weekend.
That defeat means the Magpies have still only won one match for the season and they are evens to secure all three points in this crunch clash in Newcastle v Watford betting tips.
Saturday’s defeat highlighted Newcastle’s struggles in front of goal this term and their need to boost their numbers in attack has become more urgent with the injury to leading scorer Callum Wilson.
Newcastle are yet to score more than one goal in a game since Howe’s arrival in the north east, and have drawn a blank in four of the games that the former Bournemouth gaffer has been at the helm.
Chris Wood looks set to join the Magpies from fellow Premier League strugglers Burnley and although many will feel underwhelmed by the signing, he has hit double figures for the Clarets in every season he has represented them in the top flight.
Other than Wilson, only Allan Saint-Maximim has found the net more than once for Newcastle this term and he could be best placed to break the deadlock in Newcastle v Watford betting tips as a 5/1 chance.
Worrying times for Watford
Perilously placed just above the dreaded bottom three, Watford are odds-on in the Premier League relegation betting and Ranieri looks to have his work cut out if the Hornets’ stay in the top flight is to extend beyond a single season.
They have lost six in a row in the league and the entertaining victories against Manchester United and Everton from early in the Ranieri reign are just a distant memory.
A 4-1 FA Cup loss to Leicester last weekend means they have worryingly conceded four in two of their last three games, while that is also the fifth time since the Italian joined the club in October that Watford have conceded three or more goals in a match.
With the Watford board not shy about showing their under-performing managers the exit door, current form suggests Ranieri might be anxiously looking over his shoulder ahead of the reset button being pressed.
The Hornets are 27/10 to stop the rot at St James’ Park, although they have conceded first in five of their last seven which suggests they may have to come from behind to pick up all three points here.
The fight for survival
It is beginning to look likely that it will be three of the clubs currently occupying the bottom four places in the table that will face relegation to the second tier.
Both of these sides are shackled to those positions, with 16th-placed Leeds at least six points ahead and it will be a tough ask for one of these two to overtake Marcelo Bielsa’s struggling Whites.
When you add into the mix that 18th-placed Burnley also have two games in hand then the situation is looking bleak for both Watford and Newcastle ahead of this key fixture in the fight for survival.
Not only would relegation for Newcastle be a disaster for their new Saudi Arabian owners, but it would also be a second successive relegation for Howe, who could see his lofty standing in the game come into question.
Taking the hot-seat at Newcastle was always a risk for a man touted as a future England manager and with just one victory from his opening eight games on Tyneside, his dreams of turning around a sleeping giant of English football may be fading.
As for Ranieri, it is difficult to suggest a Premier League-winning manager is out of his depth, but since that historic triumph in 2015-16 there is little on his CV to shout about.
He won just three of the 17 games he took charge of at Fulham during an ill-fated spell at Craven Cottage in 2018-19 and he has done little to increase Watford’s chances of survival since arriving at Vicarage Road.
This game finished 1-1 when they met in September and that was also the scoreline when the two sides last played at St James’ Park in 2019. That can be backed at 6/1 in Newcastle v Watford betting tips.
Only once in the last six meetings has there been three of more goals in this fixture and under 2.5 makes plenty of appeal at 21/20, while there have been two goals exactly on four of those occasions, with that chalked up at 14/5 in Newcastle v Watford betting tips.
All odds and markets correct as of date of publication