By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Managing Editor
Newcastle United entertain Aston Villa in the Barclays Premier League on Sunday (1.30pm kick-off).
The Magpies will be looking to put an end to a poor run of form which has only seen them pick up one victory since Boxing Day, while Villa have picked up just five points from a possible 18 over the last couple of months.
When the sides met earlier in the season, a goal in each half from Hatem Ben Arfa and Yoan Gouffran earned United all three points at Villa Park, and if they were to triumph on Sunday, it would give Newcastle a first double over the Villans since the 1997/98 campaign.
If you can't make the match, follow Sunday's fixture right here on nufc.co.uk for live updates, on-the-whistle half-time and full-time reports and exclusive post-match reaction, or on Twitter at @NUFCOfficial.
Sunday's fixture is the 157th match between the two clubs, and the 150th in the league. United have won more league games against Aston Villa than any other club.
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14th September, 2013 - Aston Vila 1 (Benteke 67) Newcastle 2 (Ben Arfa 18, Gouffran 73)
Aston Villa (4-3-3): Brad Guzan; Matthew Lowton, Ron Vlaar, Jores Okore (Ciaran Clark 30), Antonio Luna; Karim El Ahmadi (Libor Kozak 67), Ashley Westwood, Fabian Delph; Andreas Weimann (Aleksandar Tonev 88), Christian Benteke, Gabriel Agbonlahor
Newcastle (4-2-3-1): Tim Krul; Mathieu Debuchy, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Fabricio Coloccini, Davide Santon; Vurnon Anita (Cheick Tiote 74), Moussa Sissoko, Yohan Cabaye (Sammy Ameobi 88); Hatem Ben Arfa, Papiss Cisse, Loic Remy (Yoan Gouffran 63)
FULL RECORD v ASTON VILLA
P156 W68 D33 L55 F247 A243
(Last six games - all competitions)
Newcastle - LLLDWL
Aston Villa - DLLWDL
Newcastle (v Tottenham, Premier League): Tim Krul; Mathieu Debuchy, Mike Williamson, Steven Taylor, Davide Santon (Paul Dummett 46); Yoan Gouffran, Moussa Sissoko, Vurnon Anita, Sammy Ameobi (Sylvain Marveaux 71); Luuk de Jong (Hatem Ben Arfa 63), Papiss Cisse
Not used: Rob Elliot, James Tavernier, Sammy Ameobi, Hatem Ben Arfa
Aston Villa (v Cardiff, Premier League): Brad Guzan; Leandro Bacuna, Ron Vlaar, Nathan Baker, Ryan Bertrand; Marc Albrighton, Ashley Westwood, Fabian Delph, Joe Bennett (Andreas Weimann 69); Gabriel Agbonlahor, Christian Benteke
Not used: Jed Steer, Ciaran Clark, Karim El Ahmadi, Nicklas Helenius, Yacouba Sylla, Grant Holt
Newcastle - Loic Remy (11)
Aston Villa - Christian Benteke (8)
Newcastle - Leading scorer Loic Remy returns having served a three-game ban for a red card at Norwich in January. Captain Fabricio Coloccini is back in training and could feature after more than seven weeks out with a knee injury, while midfielder Cheick Tiote is closing in on a comeback following hamstring trouble. Gabriel Obertan (knee) and Ryan Taylor (knee) remain sidelined.
Aston Villa - The Villans have no fresh injury concerns, with only long-term injury victims Jores Okore (knee), Charles N'Zogbia (calf) and Libor Kozak (broken leg) ruled out.
A WORD FROM BOTH CAMPS
Alan Pardew, Newcastle manager: "We got two or three big, big players back in and around the group this week and that is important because we need big players with the run we are on. Our home form has been uneasy in the last few games and we are looking to put that right. That really was not us (when we lost 4-0) against Spurs and we are better than that and we have to put that right. We need two wins quickly to attack the group above us. We have had two tough games and this is more realistic for us."
Paul Lambert, Aston Villa manager: "'The expectancy will be on Newcastle. They have been beaten at home pretty heavily in the last few games. We are going to go there on the front foot because if we do then their crowd might become edgy We have got 17 points away from home. We showed at Anfield we can hurt teams on their own patch. Alan has done a good job there but we want to look upwards and close the gap between ourselves and Newcastle if we can."
Martin Atkinson (Yorkshire): 2013/14 record - 29 games, 88 yellow cards, three 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?
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DID YOU KNOW?
Aston Villa have scored 52 per cent of their goals this season in the final 30 minutes of matches.