Newcastle United were supposed to be having a difficult second season after comfortably staying in the Premier League last term, especially with Kevin Nolan, Jose Enrique and Joey Barton all jumping ship.
However, 16 points from 8 games means that they are nearly halfway to getting to the magical 40-point figure that usually keeps teams in the top flight and their current performances suggest that a Europa League place is not out of the question this term.
The Magpies have won four and drawn four of their opening eight matches and are proving to be a popular bet to beat Wigan on Saturday, with Ladbrokes (£50 free bets) offering a best price 8/13 that Alan Pardew’s claim a victory which will keep them in the top four of the table.
Newcastle were pretty impressive when drawing 2-2 with Tottenham on Sunday, twice coming from a goal down to take a point and their front two should pose several problems for a Wigan side that have lost three of their four matches on the road so far this term.
Demba Ba hadn’t scored until the 24th September, although the Senegalese forward has five goals in his last three games and the north-east club did tremendously to capture the player on a free transfer during the summer after the relegation of West Ham.
He will be partnered by the effective Leon Best who has scored three goals this term and Newcastle are averaging nearly two goals per home match at the moment.
Wigan Athletic should not be written off considering they regularly seem to upset the odds and stay in the Premier League thanks to a couple of surprise wins on the road mixed with some solid home form.
However, you do fear for Roberto Martinez’s team after that 3-1 defeat to Bolton which could have seen the visitors score five or six and the 11/2 with bet365 (£200 free betting) is that big a price for a reason.