Newcastle United fact file: What Sheffield United can expect including line-up, form and tactics

Sheffield United will be reunited with a familiar face on Thursday evening as Steve Bruce returns to Bramall Lane with Newcastle United.

Thursday, 5th December 2019, 3:15 pm
Steve Bruce will return to Sheffield United

After successive games against Manchester United and Wolves, Sheffield United face an on-paper more favourable game against Newcastle United.

This is the Premier League though, and every single game is a tricky task.

Steve Bruce will be hoping to spoil the mood on his return to Bramall Lane to face the side that he began his managerial career at over 20 years ago.

Sign up to our Sheffield United newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Steve Bruce started his managerial career at Bramall Lane

His Newcastle United side have been steady so far this season, but what can the Blades expect from them? Find out here.

Recent form

Man City (H) drew 2-2, Aston Villa (A) lost 2-0, Bournemouth (H) won 2-1, West Ham (A) won 3-2, Wolves (H) drew 1-1.

On the whole, Newcastle’s form has been solid recently, and eight points from their previous five games will please the Geordie faithful.

There has also been trend of high performance against the better sides in the league, that has continued throughout the season. Bruce’s side were poor in defeat to Newcastle, but a fighting point against Manchester City can be added to victories over Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur earlier in the season.

Away record

Their away record doesn’t look so great. Newcastle have won twice and lost five times in their seven away games.

Danger man

Allan Saint-Maximin: An exciting winger, Saint-Maximin likes to run at defenders in a direct style, with lots of pace and aggression. The only problem is, there quite often isn’t an end product at the end of it. The Frenchman could be a great outball for Newcastle though, and could cause problems if given enough room. If he adds a consistently dangerous final ball to his game he will be very difficult to stop.

Style of play

Newcastle like to play on the counter-attack, which served them well in victories over West Ham, Spurs and Manchester United. They tend to play the ball directly into the centre-forward (usually Joelinton) and build attacks from there. If the Blades can shackle the frontman then Newcastle will struggle to keep hold of the ball, which should give the home side the opportunity to dictate the pace of the game.

Likely lineup

Newcastle are unlikely to change their team significantly from the team that drew with Manchester CIty, though Fabian Schar could return in defence.

Dubravka; Schar, Fernandez, Clark, Manquillo, Hayden, Shelvey, Willems, Almiron, Saint-Maximin, Joelinton.

What has the manager said?

“The energy and the drive the team (Sheffield United) have, which obviously comes from the top, is no surprise. It’s no surprise that they’re making a fist of it in the Premier League. They’re a very, very decent side with good players.”