Prediction and odds: Newcastle (4/9) vs Southampton (15/2)
We’re backing Newcastle/Newcastle (HT/FT) at 11/10
When: Tuesday, 31st January 2023 – 8pm KO (GMT)
Where: St James’ Park
Southampton and Newcastle United will collide on Tuesday night in the second leg of their League Cup semi-final.
Newcastle United supporters can be forgiven for thinking they’re on cloud nine. They have been on an absolute tear this season and that’s true across both the Premier League and the League Cup. Eddie Howe has got this team playing like a cohesive unit for the first time in what feels like forever, and it’s hard not to get excited about what the Magpies could achieve between now and the end of May.
After beating Tranmere in the second round back in August, the Magpies required a penalty shootout to get past Crystal Palace. They went on to play out a tense 1-0 win over Bournemouth, and then in the quarter-finals, they saw off Leicester 2-0 to take them one step closer to the home of English football. Last week, in the first leg of this tie, it was one Joelinton goal that handed them the narrow advantage.
Southampton, for the first time in years, are genuinely flirting with the relegation zone. While there’s still a long way to go in the Premier League campaign, there’s simply no denying that the Saints are in a spot of bother. However, one of the shining lights for them so far this season has been their cup form – and if they play smart, they could easily overcome the deficit they created for themselves on the south coast.
The Saints tore through Cambridge in August to progress past the second round but in the third, they required penalties to overcome Sheffield Wednesday. They proceeded to beat a very impressive Lincoln side 2-1, with their most impressive feat being the quarters when they knocked out Manchester City. In the first leg of the semis, they went down to 10 men and gave up a 1-0 defeat.
With Tyneside bouncing and an elusive place in a cup final at stake, we can’t see anything other than Newcastle United winning this game to cement their place in the big dance. We expect a few tense exchanges early on with Howe’s men, eventually, taking the lead before the half time interval.
Southampton will be forced to come out and play which is rarely a problem for them in a cup climate. Alas, they just won’t be able to deal with the physicality presented to them.
The hosts will score again in the second half to make it 2-0, and 3-0 on aggregate. They’ll be serenaded by the fans for the remainder of the evening, eventually leading them down the path of the full time whistle and their biggest game in years.
Our tips (all taken from bet365): Newcastle/Newcastle (HT/FT) at 11/10 + under 2.5 goals at 9/10[geosnippet id=3620]
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