Moussa Sissoko


By Tom Easterby

 

Newcastle United entertain Tony Pulis' Crystal Palace at St. James' Park on Saturday (3pm kick off).

Palace currently sit three points above the relegation zone, and will be looking to avenge the 3-0 defeat they suffered at Selhurst Park in December.

Goals from Yohan Cabaye, an own goal from Danny Gabbidon and a late penalty from Hatem Ben Arfa sealed a comfortable victory on on the road for United, sending them into the Christmas period full of festive cheer.

The Magpies, on the other hand, could rise to eighth with a win at the weekend and Alan Pardew's men will be seeking return to winning ways following last Saturday's narrow defeat at Fulham.

Follow Saturday'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 our relaunched account @NUFC.


STAT ATTACK
Crystal Palace haven't registered a goal in their last six outings against the Magpies, while Newcastle have managed to bag just a solitary strike in their last five league games at St. James' Park. Though the statistical omens for a goal frenzy this weekend don't look particularly good, United will be buoyed by the fact they boast an superior overall record against the Eagles, winning 19 of their 31 meetings, compared to Palace's seven.


TICKET NEWS
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LAST MEETING
21st December, 2013 Crystal Palace 0 Newcastle 3 (Cabaye 25, Gabbidon og 39, Ben Arfa 86pen)

Crystal Palace (4-4-2): Julian Speroni; Adrian Mariappa, Danny Gabbidon, Damien Delaney, Dean Moxey (Jonathan Parr 46); Barry Bannan (Yannick Bolasie 46), Joel Ward, Mile Jedinak, Jason Puncheon; Marouane Chamakh, Cameron Jerome (Dwight Gayle 77)

Newcastle (4-3-3): Tim Krul; Mathieu Debuchy, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini, Davide Santon; Vurnon Anita, Cheick Tiote, Yohan Cabaye (Hatem Ben Arfa 79); Moussa Sissoko, Loic Remy (Shola Ameobi 75), Yoan Gouffran


FULL RECORD v CRYSTAL PALACE
P31 W19 D5 L7 F47 A23


FORM GUIDE
(Last six games - all competitions)

Newcastle - LWWLLL
Crystal Palace - DLDLLL


LAST LINE-UP
Newcastle (v Fulham, Premier League):
Tim Krul; Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini, Paul Dummett; Vurnon Anita (Sylvain Marveaux 81), Cheick Tiote, Moussa Sissoko, Yoan Gouffran; Papiss Cisse (Shola Ameobi 71), Luuk de Jong (Adam Armstrong 86)
Subs not used: Jak Alnwick, Massadio Haidara, Steven Taylor, Dan Gosling.

Crystal Palace (v Sunderland, Premier League): Julian Speroni; Joel Ward, Adrian Mariappa, Scott Dann, Damien Delaney; Yannick Bolasie (Jason Puncheon 81), Kagisho Dikgacoi, Mile Jedinak, Joe Ledley; Tom Ince (Adlene Guedioura 74); Glenn Murray (Cameron Jerome 63)
Subs not used: Wayne Hennessey, Patrick McCarthy, Jerome Thomas, Dwight Gayle.


TOP SCORER
Newcastle - Loic Remy (13)
Crystal Palace - Marouane Chamakh (6)


TEAM NEWS
Newcastle - Hatem Ben Arfa, Sammy Ameobi and Rob Elliot are all back in contention for the Magpies, having been ruled out of the last few weeks through injury. However, Davide Santon (illness), Loic Remy (calf), Mathieu Debuchy (groin), Gabriel Obertan (knee) and Ryan Taylor (knee) all remain sidelined.

Crystal Palace - Leading goalscorer Marouane Chamakh misses out through a groin injury, while fellow front man Dwight Gayle is sidelined by an ankle complaint. Danny Gabbidon (knock) and Barry Bannan (illness) could return at St. James' Park.


A WORD FROM BOTH CAMPS
Alan Pardew, Newcastle manager: "Palace had a good performance at Sunderland, and I don't expect them to be much different really. They will be fighting and scrapping, and Tony's teams are always very, very sure in terms of their jobs, and we need to come up with some more imagination than we did against Fulham, and some more cutting edge to our play. Most of our play was pretty good against Fulham, but the last third, unfortunately, wasn't good enough."

Tony Pulis, Crystal Palace manager: "Alan will have more control than people think. With technology today, you can always have your finger on the pulse. If he is watching the game from afar, as long as he has contact - which he will have with the coaching staff - then I am sure they would have sorted that. There are a lot of managers who sit on the bench and they don't move, there are others, and I am one of them, who get really involved in the game. It is different for horses for courses."


REFEREE
Lee Probert (Wiltshire): 2013/14 record - 25 games, 49 yellow cards, six red cards


PLAYED FOR BOTH TEAMS
Darren Ambrose, Peter Ramage, Fitz Hall, Shefki Kuqi, John Burridge, Andy Thorn, Wayne Routledge


FANCY A FLUTTER?
To find the best odds for Saturday's match, thanks to our official betting partner 138.com, click here.


DID YOU KNOW?
Crystal Palace have scored the fewest number of goals in the Barclays Premier League so far this season, averaging just 0.65 goals per game. They have also only scored more than one goal in three matches this term, all at home.