Sam Allardyce makes a total of five changes to the side which drew 2-2 with Derby County at the weekend for the Boxing Day trip to Wigan.
Out go the central defensive pairing of David Rozehnal and Claudio Cacapa with Steven Taylor and Abdoulaye Faye coming in, as we had expected.
In midfield, Damien Duff starts his first game for more than eight months, while skipper Geremi and Turkish playmaker Emre are also recalled to the starting line-up.
Joey Barton and Nicky Butt, with Nigerian striker Oba Martins are also left out. Cacapa, Butt and Martins are named among the Newcastle substitutes. Barton is not risked having picked up a slight ankle injury.
Former Newcastle striker Antoine Sibierski returns to the Wigan Athletic side having not started a game since October, and Titus Bramble also included.
Wigan Athletic: Chris Kirkland, Mario Melchiot, Paul Scharner, Titus Bramble, Kevin Kilbane, Antonio Valencia, Denny Landzaat, Michael Brown, Ryan Taylor, Marcus Bent, Antoine Sibierski
Subs: Mike Pollitt, Emmerson Boyce, Salomon Olembe, Josip Skoko, Julius Aghahowa
Newcastle United: Shay Given, Habib Beye, Charles N’Zogbia, Steven Taylor, Abdoulaye Faye, Geremi, Emre, Alan Smith, Damien Duff, James Milner, Mark Viduka
Subs: Jose Enrique, Claudio Cacapa, Oba Martins, Steve Harper, Nicky Butt
Referee: Mike Dean
The team we had picked is the team Sam has selected but with Butt in place of Geremi – so fairly close. We think it’s a good attacking side. Now for the 3 points. 😀