By Danny Wright

19th Oct, 2017 | 4:56pm

Paul Merson makes bold Newcastle prediction for clash v Crystal Palace

By Danny Wright

Paul Merson believes that Newcastle United will be unable to beat Crystal Palace when Roy Hodgson’s side travel to St. James’ Park on Saturday afternoon.

The Sky Sports pundit has boldly predicted that the Magpies will suffer a 1-1 draw with the lowly Eagles, who only picked up their first points and first goals of the season in a shock win over Chelsea last weekend.

Merson has raved about how Palace defied the odds to overcome the Premier League champions on Saturday, and has placed a lot of importance on them backing that result on Tyneside in their next outing.

However he will have done little to endear himself to the Newcastle supporters, who will no doubt be looking at this fixture as a straightforward win.

“What a result for Palace against Chelsea, and it just shows you how important and good Wilfried Zaha is, how big a player he is in that side,” said Merson on the Sky Sports website.

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“This is another big, big game, and I can’t really separate them. You like to think Palace have turned the corner, but if they lose this they are virtually back to where they were the week before the Chelsea game, because they would have highlighted this game as a potential three points.

“If they can get a draw, it’s been a great couple weekends for Palace.”

Crystal Palace sit bottom of the Premier League table despite winning last weekend while Newcastle occupy ninth and can potentially fly up to fifth place if results go their way this matchweek.

History is certainly on the side of the Tyneside club, having lost just once in their last 13 meetings with the South London side, dating all the way back to 1999.

In their last meeting in April 2015, Newcastle ran out 1-0 winners thanks to Andros Townsend’s goal, and he will likely be lining up against his former club on Saturday.

In other Newcastle United news, the Magpies have jetted out on a French transfer mission to keep tabs on this in-demand striker.

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