Steven Taylor and Mathieu Debuchy

By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Managing Editor


Newcastle United are boosted by the return of five key players as they entertain Sunderland in the Tyne-Wear derby at St. James' Park today (noon kick-off).

Defenders Mathieu Debuchy and Steven Taylor, midfield enforcer Cheick Tiote and attacking pair Sylvain Marveaux and Yoan Gouffran are all back in the starting line-up for the highlight of the North-East's sporting calendar.

So it is five changes for Alan Pardew's men, with the quintet of Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Massadio Haidara, Vurnon Anita, Gael Bigirimana the unlucky ones to miss out from the Magpies' midweek Europa League tie.

United will start in a 4-2-3-1 formation, with goalkeeper Tim Krul protected by a back four of Debuchy, Taylor, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa and Jonas Gutierrez.

Tiote will anchor the hosts' midfield alongside stand-in captain Yohan Cabaye, allowing an attack-minded trio of Marveaux, Moussa Sissoko and Gouffran to feed lone strike Papiss Cisse.

The Senegalese front man has now notched 13 goals this season, including one in each of Newcastle's last five home games.

On the substitutes' bench there is a place for Shola Ameobi, who has netted seven Tyne-Wear derby goals during his career to date.

And the long-serving forward is joined by Academy forward Adam Campbell, Hatem Ben Arfa, Anita, James Perch, Haidara and Rob Elliot.


Newcastle United (4-2-3-1): Tim Krul; Mathieu Debuchy, Steven Taylor, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Jonas Gutierrez; Cheick Tiote, Yohan Cabaye (c); Sylvain Marveaux, Moussa Sissoko, Yoan Gouffran; Papiss Cisse

Substitutes: Rob Elliot, Massadio Haidara, James Perch, Vurnon Anita, Hatem Ben Arfa, Adam Campbell, Shola Ameobi


Sunderland (4-2-3-1): Simon Mignolet; Phil Bardsley, Carlos Cuellar, John O'Shea (c), Danny Rose; Alfred N'Diaye, Sebastian Larsson; Adam Johnson, Stephane Sessegnon, James McClean; Danny Graham

Substitutes: Kieren Westwood, Matthew Kilgallon, Jack Colback, David Vaughan, Jordan Laidler, Kader Mangane, Mikael Mandron


Referee: Howard Webb (Yorkshire)