By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Club Reporter
Newcastle United will be looking to maintain their 100 per cent home record on Sunday when they entertain Aston Villa in Premier League action.
The Magpies have triumphed over Tottenham Hotspur and Greek outfit Atromitos on Tyneside already this season, and will be keen to make it a hat-trick of victories when Paul Lambert's side come to town.
In contrast, Villa have lost their opening two Premier League fixtures - against West Ham United and Everton.
When the sides met last season they played out a 1-1 draw at Villa Park, before United triumphed 2-1 at the Sports Direct Arena in February.
Sunday's meeting is the 154th match between the two clubs, and the 147th in the league. Along with Manchester City, Newcastle have won more league games against Aston Villa than against any other club.
Tickets for this fixture are still on sale and can be purchased by visiting the Box Office at the Sports Direct Arena, our Club Stores in Eldon Square and the Metrocentre, by calling 0844 372 1892, or by clicking on the button below.
5th February, 2012 - Newcastle 2 (Ba 30, Cisse 71) Aston Villa (Keane 45)
Newcastle (4-4-2): Tim Krul; Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini (c), Davide Santon; Ryan Taylor (Gabriel Obertan 34), James Perch, Danny Guthrie, Jonas Gutierrez; Leon Best (Papiss Cisse 14), Demba Ba (Shola Ameobi 90)
Aston Villa (4-4-1-1): Shay Given; Alan Hutton, Richard Dunne, Carlos Cuellar, Stephen Warnock; Stephen Ireland (Barry Bannan 46), Ciaran Clark (Gary Gardner 84), Stiliyan Petrov (c), Charles N'Zogbia (Emile Heskey 67); Robbie Keane; Darren Bent
FULL RECORD v ASTON VILLA
P153 W66 D32 L55 F242 A240
(Last six games - all competitions)
Newcastle - WLDWLW
Aston Villa - WLLDLW
Newcastle (v Atromitos, Europa League): Tim Krul; Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini (c), Ryan Taylor (Haris Vuckic 11); James Perch (James Tavernier 60), Gael Bigirimana; Gabriel Obertan, Dan Gosling, Sylvain Marveaux (Romain Amalfitano 90); Demba Ba
Not used: Steve Harper, Yohan Cabaye, Adam Campbell, Papiss Cisse
Aston Villa (v Tranmere Rovers, Capital One Cup): Brad Guzan; Enda Stevens (Brett Holman 67), Nathan Baker, Matthew Lowton, Eric Lichaj; Stephen Ireland, Fabian Delph, Barry Bannan, Chris Herd (Graham Burke 76); Darren Bent, Andreas Weimann (Charles N'Zogbia 71)
Not used: Shay Given, Derrick Williams, Daniel Johnson, Nathan Delfouneso
Newcastle - Hatem Ben Arfa is available for selection again, with his suspension only covering European matches. Ryan Taylor (knee), Shola Ameobi (hamstring) and Sammy Ameobi (hamstring) are all ruled out, while midfielder Cheick Tiote (knee) is doubtful.
Aston Villa - Manager Paul Lambert could hand new signings Joe Bennett and Jordan Bowery their debuts, after the pair arrived from Middlesbrough and Chesterfield respectively this week. But Villa have a host of injuries, with Gary Gardner (knee), Samir Curruthers (ankle), Richard Dunne (groin), Marc Albrighton (knee), Gabriel Agbonlahor (knee) and Stiliyan Petrov (acute leukaemia) all ruled out.
A WORD FROM BOTH CAMPS
Alan Pardew, Newcastle manager: "Aston Villa are probably hurt a little bit by the results they've had, but they've got some great players there. They will be determined to turn the situation around. The manager is top, top drawer, make no mistake about that, and he will ask questions of us."
Paul Lambert, Aston Villa manager: "It's a real tough game coming up, away from home, and we will try and go and win. We are capable of making chances. We will have to be right on our game to get anything. Traditionally it's a terrific football stadium."
Lee Probert (Wiltshire) - 2012/13 record: One game, four yellow cards, no red cards.
PLAYED FOR BOTH TEAMS
Habib Beye, John Burridge, Franz Carr, Tommy Craig, David Ginola, Shay Given, Marlon Harewood, Stephen Ireland, James Milner, Charles N'Zogbia, Nolberto Solano, Alan Thompson, Steve Watson, Peter Withe
FANCY A FLUTTER?
To find the best odds for Saturday's match, thanks to our Official Betting Partner Bet Butler, click here.
DID YOU KNOW?
Newcastle are just two goals short of recording 1,000 scored in the Premier League.