Thu 28 Dec 2023, 14:39 by Ash Harrison

'Really poor': Paul Merson now predicts Newcastle will have a hard time against Liverpool on Monday

'Really poor': Paul Merson now predicts Newcastle will have a hard time against Liverpool on Monday
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Things are likely to go from bad to worse for Newcastle United as they ride the wave of poor form into a fixture against their biggest bogey team, Liverpool.

The Reds are back in title-challenging form this season after poor campaign last time round, but even when Liverpool were lacklustre, Newcastle could never seem to eke out a result when they met the Merseysiders.

Now both sides are in contrasting form, the writing is on the wall for the Magpies unless Eddie Howe can work a miracle.

Paul Merson isn't giving Newcastle much hope

Paul Merson has made his score prediction for Sportskeeda and it's little surprise which way he swung.

Newcastle liverpool
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Newcastle just can't get the better of Liverpool
"I can't believe Newcastle United were beaten by Nottingham Forest earlier this week, it was an absolutely shocking result for Eddie Howe's side. It's all about timings when you play one of the so-called big games and Liverpool are playing the Magpies at the perfect time.

"Forest's victory against Newcastle wasn't a smash-and-grab as they were really poor on the night and got well beaten. Newcastle were also poor in the cup game against Chelsea, so things are not going well for them at the moment.

"Liverpool, on the other hand, got a hard-fought 2-0 win against Burnley in a game that marked Diogo Jota's return to the team. He's a top player and his presence will come as a timely boost for Jurgen Klopp, who is set to lose Mohamed Salah next month as the 31-year-old prepares to represent Egypt at the AFCON.

"Liverpool are very much in the thick of it in the race for the Premier League title and should win this one at home. Their squad isn't perfect, but I can't see Klopp dipping into the market in January despite their injury crisis at the back, with the likes of Joel Matip, Andy Robertson and Kostas Tsimikas on the sidelines.

"Prediction: Liverpool 2-0 Newcastle United"

Could Newcastle spring a New Year's surprise?

The way things are right now for Newcastle, a 2-0 defeat at Anfield would actually be a decent result.

That being said, there'd be nothing more Newcastle than turning up and putting in a performance and coming away with a result that shocks everybody.

Hopefully, that ends up being the case, but as you can probably tell, confidence is not high right now.

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