Sky Sports pundit Charlie Nicholas has backed Steve Bruce to take his second win as Newcastle United head coach by beating Watford on Saturday.
Javi Gracia’s Hornets are currently rooted to the bottom of the Premier League table as the only side yet to win a game this season, having suffered defeats at the hands of Brighton, Everton and West Ham United.
The Vicarage Road natives will be buoyed from a midweek victory over Coventry City in the Carabao Cup, however, after Gracia named a strong line-up to deal with the League One outfit, including a first start for summer signing Danny Welbeck (TransferMarkt).
Newcastle, on the other hand, lost to top-flight opposition in the Second Round as Leicester City triumphed at St. James’ Park on penalties, but took their first win of the league campaign last time out by beating Tottenham Hotspur 1-0.
Nicholas now feels the Magpies can build solid momentum by beating a ‘toiling’ Watford side when the Hornets travel to the North East on Saturday and has predicted fate will award the hosts a 1-0 win.
“It was a very nice result for Newcastle last weekend, may I say,” Nicholas wrote as part of his weekly predictions for Sky Sports. “The stick that was aimed at the players and Steve Bruce will be there consistently.
“His team worked hard and Joelinton got his campaign off to a start. If they could go and win this weekend, against a team that are toiling, then this will be great.
“Watford have had a shocker of a start, and there is always the question as to how much time Javi Gracia is given. They got to the FA Cup final last season. Who will be the foot soldiers for Watford [this term]?
“Abdoulaye Doucoure has not started in great fashion, [and] where have Gerard Deulofeu and Roberto Pereyra been? They started like a train last season.”
As well as being yet to win a Premier League game this campaign, Watford are one of only two sides to have only scored a single goal in the opening three fixtures – the other being Everton, who beat Gracia’s men 1-0 on matchday two.
At the other end of the field, Watford have conceded seven goals – the second-most in the top-flight – after Brighton and West Ham both struck three past Ben Foster.
Newcastle, meanwhile, may have only scored twice themselves, but kept Arsenal to a single goal and held Tottenham out. The questions will be if they can repeat that against Watford after being torn apart by Norwich City.
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