Preview: Newcastle United vs. Aston Villa 

Preview: Newcastle United vs. Aston Villa 

Kicking off their trips the United States for the Premier League Summer Series, Newcastle United and Aston Villa meet in Pennsylvania on Sunday.

Four other clubs from the English top flight will take part in the tournament over the upcoming week, as they all warm up for the 2023-24 campaign.

Before the end of July, five East Coast states will play host to nine matches between Premier League teams, as Newcastle United and Aston Villa are joined by Brentford, Brighton & Hove Albion, Chelsea and Fulham in heading Stateside.

Newcastle arrive in America having already posted a couple of pre-season wins, with their 3-2 defeat of local side Gateshead last week being followed by victory at Ibrox on Tuesday.

Continuing preparations for a season in which they make a long-awaited return to the Champions League, the Magpies ran out 2-1 winners against Rangers in Allan McGregor’s testimonial: Miguel Almiron’s first-half opener was cancelled out midway through the second half, but Harrison Ashby headed home a late winner.

Boosted by victory in front of a sellout crowd in Glasgow, Eddie Howe’s men now tackle familiar foes from the Premier League at Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field, before heading on to Atlanta next week.

It is three months since Newcastle last met Aston Villa, on an occasion when the West Midlands side stormed to a 3-0 win at Villa Park, so even in an exhibition match the chance for a slice of revenge could prove a motivating factor on Sunday – particularly ahead of next month’s Premier League opener between the clubs.

Then, after wrapping up their American sojourn with games against Chelsea and Brighton, Serie A side Fiorentina and La Liga’s Villarreal will help tune Howe and company up for continental competition in their final two pre-season friendlies.

Once Newcastle conclude their warm-up programme, Aston Villa will pay them a visit at St James’ Park, in the two teams’ first competitive match of the new season.

Between now and the big kickoff on August 12, Villa are set to take on Fulham and Brentford while in the USA, before pitting their wits against Lazio and Valencia early next month.

Unai Emery’s Villans are also preparing for a Europa Conference League playoff, having posted the club’s best league finish for over a decade in 2022-23, and the squad which travelled to Pennsylvania included two new recruits with experience at continental level: free transfer Youri Tielemans and reported £33m buy Pau Torres.

Also in the process of concluding a club-record £50m-plus deal for Bayer Leverkusen winger Moussa Diaby, there is no doubt Villa’s owners are going all-in as they attempt to join Newcastle in challenging the Premier League’s established order next term.

With that in mind, Emery’s men will now step up their preparations in America following a 1-1 draw in their first friendly fixture against nearby Walsall last weekend, when Villa were held 1-1 by the League Two side at Bescot Stadium.

Newcastle United friendly form:

Newcastle United form (all competitions):

Aston Villa friendly form:

Aston Villa form (all competitions):

We say: Newcastle United 1-2 Aston Villa
With both teams still to reach peak fitness after the brief summer break, an open game between two expensively-assembled squads could ensue. Aston Villa recorded a convincing win when they last met Newcastle on Tyneside, and they can taste victory again this weekend, in front of their US-based supporters.

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