Newcastle predicted lineup vs Brentford - Premier League

Eddie Howe's first game as manager of Newcastle United is at home to Brentford on Saturday
Eddie Howe's first game as manager of Newcastle United is at home to Brentford on Saturday / Stu Forster/GettyImages

Eddie Howe begins his tenure at the helm of Newcastle United by hosting newly promoted Brentford on Saturday afternoon.

As the first manager actively selected by the controversial new cohort steering the ship on Tyneside, Howe's first task is to stop the club sinking into the second tier. The former Bournemouth and Burnley boss has shown some healthy tactical flexibility during his career but may opt for the 4-4-2 formation he has tended to favour over the years.

On the back of Newcastle's worst ever start to a league campaign, here's the XI Howe may select to earn a first win of the season.

Newcastle predicted lineup vs Brentford - Premier League

1. Goalkeeper & defenders

Martin Dubravka (GK) - Technically, Dubravka hasn't conceded a goal for Newcastle since May. However, he's only played two matches for the Magpies in that period but may finally be available after a lengthy injury layoff.

Javier Manquillo (RB) - The 27-year-old's status as one of Newcastle's more prolific goal contributors this term has been aided by an unsustainable efficiency which has earned him three goals and assists from just five shots or key passes.

Fabian Schar (CB) - Shunted to the fringes of the squad under the previous management, Schar's ability to execute a type of pass that isn't a timid lateral roll or aimless boot upfield may have caught Howe's eye.

Jamaal Lascelles (CB) - As the defensive linchpin of a side that has conceded five penalties already this season (second-highest among the continent’s elite), Lascelles has been responsible for two of those spot kicks - a tally only exceeded by two players in Europe’s top five leagues.

Matt Ritchie (LB) - For a player who 'loved every minute' playing under Howe at Bournemouth, Newcastle's only Premier League ever-present this term may well maintain that status.

2. Midfielders

Ryan Fraser (RM) - Despite parting ways with Howe and Bournemouth in a COVID-induced contract dispute that his former and current manager admitted was 'uncomfortable', Fraser's familiarity with the 43-year-old's ideals may stand him in good stead for a starting berth.

Isaac Hayden (CM) - Hardly the most adventurous footballer at the best of times, the former Arsenal youth team player has sunk into an even more conservative passing range this term.

Sean Longstaff (CM) - In a side that can be painfully passive, Longstaff intriguingly ranks as the most prolific (although not too accurate) presser among the Premier League's central midfielders this season (per Opta).

Allan Saint-Maximin (LM) - One of the few shafts of light in a bleak campaign, Newcastle's heavily taped tip-toer has been responsible for half of the team's carries into the penalty area, the highest proportion in Europe's top five leagues.

3. Forwards

Joelinton (ST) - With six Premier League goals since his (surely soon to be beaten) club-record arrival in the summer of 2019, Joelinton is still one goal shy of the tally he racked up in his final season with Hoffenheim.

Callum Wilson (ST) - Boasting a minutes-per-goal ratio since the start of last season bettered by just three players in the division, getting Wilson on the pitch is imperative.

Read 90min's preview for Newcastle vs Brentford here.

Read Brentford's predicted lineup here.