Pundit blasts Newcastle United's 'non-performance' & makes Chelsea scoreline prediction

Newcastle United are back in Premier League action this weekend, when they take on Frank Lampard's Chelsea at St James' Park in tomorrow's lunchtime kick-off.

(Photo by Adam Davy - Pool/Getty Images)
(Photo by Adam Davy - Pool/Getty Images)

Writing in his weekly predictions column for BBC Sport, pundit Mark Lawrenson backed a 2-0 win for the visitors.

Justifying his prediction, the ex-Liverpool defender claimed: "Newcastle will be awkward, perhaps even more so than usual, after their non-performance in their defeat at Southampton last time out.

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"Magpies boss Steve Bruce will try to make them much tighter, and they will have to be to keep Chelsea out. Frank Lampard's side were just hitting their stride before the international break, especially in attack - they created so many chances in their win over Sheffield United."

"Christian Pulisic and Kai Havertz are out of this game but that would still allow the Blues to name pretty much the same team that beat the Blades. At the back, Thiago Silva is a doubt because he has only just got back from international duty, but I'd still expect Chelsea to win comfortably."

Meanwhile, Lawro's sparring partner for the week, Idles bassist and Magpies fan Adam Devonshire, picked a 2-2 draw.

Last time the two sides met, back in January, Steve Bruce's side bagged all three points at St James' Park, with a dramatic late goal from Isaac Hayden is a game that was dominated by the visitors.

As things stand, Newcastle sit in 13th place, but a win over the Blues could see them push into the top half of the table.