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Newcastle vs. London Irish: Aviva Premiership Preview

Newcastle play host to London Irish at Kingston Park this afternoon, in one of the tighter games this Aviva Premiership weekend

Irish will be travelling as slim favourites this afternoon, based on the fact that Newcastle have only ever managed to beat the Exiles once in nine previous meetings.

Newcastle head into today's clash with a number of changes. The Falcons are without injured captain James Hudson- who is sidelined for next two months with a hamstring injury. Hudson is replaced by Samoan lock Filip Levi whilst Scottish centre Andy Henderson returns to the starting line-up.

London Irish, on the other hand have opted for continuity, naming an unchanged side from the one that started against Gloucester last weekend.

Team Lineups:

Newcastle: Tait; Bobo, Eves, Henderson, Amesbury; Gopperth, Young; Golding, Vickers (capt), Ryan, Levi, Swinson, Wilson, Pennycook, Hogg.

London Irish: Armitage; Ojo, Mapusua , Bowden, Joseph; Lamb, Hodgson; Dermody (capt), Buckland, Rautenbach, Kennedy, Casey, Roche, Danaher, Stowers.

With neither one of these teams lighting the Premiership alight this season, the bookies are calling this one a lot closer than what will most probably be the case in a few week’s time.

In a clear example of how tight they are calling this one- a 1-5 point win margin in favour of the Exiles will be locked at 5.0, while the same margin toward the Falcons will see 5.50

This clash is being considered as a crucial deciding factor in how the table will be decided this season, with one of these sides sure to be buffering the top half from the bottom.

The Exiles boast a quality line-up of ex and current nationals in the form of Armitage, Ojo and Rautenbach, and one must feel that they are due a good game on the road.

With that being said, the men from up North have some of the most dangerous names in backline rugby with Tait and Bobo combining as a lethal combination.

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