Newcastle United will be looking to make it four Premier League victories in a row when they head to London Stadium on Saturday afternoon to take on top-four hopefuls West Ham United.
The away side, who are now out of the relegation zone, will enter the contest off the back of a 1-0 win over Aston Villa, while West Ham played out a 2-2 draw with Leicester City at the King Power Stadium.
West Ham secured a point at Leicester last weekend courtesy of a last-gasp effort from Craig Dawson, who survived a handball shout to make it 2-2, with the Hammers moving onto 41 points for the season.
David Moyes’s side have been knocked out of the top four by Manchester United, who beat Brighton & Hove Albion on Tuesday evening, with the capital outfit currently fifth in the table, two points behind the Red Devils, while they are two points clear of sixth-placed Arsenal, who have three games in hand.
Wolverhampton Wanderers in seventh have two games in hand on West Ham, while eighth-placed Tottenham Hotspur have three, so the Hammers could find themselves sliding down the table over the next few weeks if they are unable to put some wins on the board.
Moyes’s team have back-to-back home league games against Newcastle and Wolves before heading to Southampton in the FA Cup, but they have lost two of their last four top-flight fixtures at London Stadium to Southampton and Leeds United, with the visitors scoring three times on each occasion.
The Hammers ran out 4-2 winners at Newcastle earlier this season, but they have actually lost three of their last five matches against the Magpies, including a 2-0 defeat at London Stadium last term.
Newcastle have turned a corner since losing 4-0 at home to Manchester City on December 19, with the Magpies unbeaten in their last five in the Premier League, drawing with Manchester United and Watford, in addition to beating Leeds United, Everton and Aston Villa.
The Magpies have won their last three in the league, including a 1-0 success at home to Aston Villa last weekend, with Kieran Trippier’s first-half free kick deciding the contest at St James’ Park.
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Eddie Howe’s side are now out of the relegation zone, sitting 17th in the table, four points clear of 18th-placed Norwich City, while they have a game in hand on the Canaries.
Newcastle simply cannot afford to be relegated this season due to their lucrative takeover, and January signings Chris Wood, Trippier, Dan Burn and Matt Targett have all had a positive impact, but Bruno Guimaraes is still waiting to make his first start for the club, featuring off the bench against Everton and Aston Villa.
The Magpies have the second-worst away record in the league this season, picking up just six points from 10 matches, but confidence is growing at St James’ Park, and another positive result this weekend would lead them nicely into a huge fixture away to Brentford on February 26