St. James' Park
Sky Bet Championship
By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Managing Editor
At St. James' Park
Newcastle United forward Ayoze Perez has been handed a place in the starting line-up for Saturday's Sky Bet Championship home fixture against Brighton & Hove Albion (5.30pm kick-off).
The Spanish starlet scored both goals in the Magpies' midweek EFL Cup win over Cheltenham Town, and with fellow front men Aleksandar Mitrovic and Dwight Gayle ruled out by head injuries sustained in that match, Perez has been tasked with leading the line at St. James' Park.
Perez is one of only four United players who keeps his place following the cup triumph, as boss Rafa Benitez shuffles his pack again, making seven changes.
Isaac Hayden and Jonjo Shelvey will anchor the hosts' midfield, with a trio of Matt Ritchie, Mohamed Diame and Yoan Gouffran ahead of them.
And they will be tasked with supplying the ammunition for Perez, as the Magpies go in search of a fourth consecutive victory in all competitions.
On the substitutes' bench there is a place for new signing DeAndre Yedlin, who arrived on Tyneside earlier this week from Tottenham Hotspur.
Brighton & Hove Albion (4-4-2): David Stockdale; Bruno (c), Shane Duffy, Lewis Dunk, Gaetan Bong; Anthony Knockaert, Beram Kayal, Steve Sidwell, Jiri Skalak; Glenn Murray, Sam Baldock
Substitutes: Niki Maenpaa, Rob Hunt, Oliver Norwood, Dale Stephens, Jamie Murphy, Kazenga LuaLua, Tomer Hemed
Referee: Keith Stroud (Hampshire)