Newcastle must win this afternoon against Stoke City, and if we don’t it’s points lost, it’s as simple as that.
Oba Martins – due a goal today 😀
Stoke’s away form has seen them pick up just two draws in 7 games and they have scored only 3 goals and conceded 15 goals on their travels. Not very good at all, let’s face it.
There’s a case here that if we cannot beat Stoke, we should be in big trouble in the league, but these games are never as easy as they look on paper, of course.
But we have to forget the little bit of hype about Rory Delap’s throw-ins – and the fact that Kinnear is saying they are a good team. If Rory’s throws are that dangerous then how come they have only 2 points from 7 games away from the Britannia Stadium this season?
It’s very likely that manager Joe Kinnear will field an unchanged side as we attempt to end a run of four games without a win.
22 year-old Spanish striker Xisco (hamstring), is back in contention, and we’re pleased to see the lad back although Shola Ameobi (foot and ankle) joins long-term injured players Alan Smith (foot), and Ignacio Gonzalez (Achilles) on the sidelines for today’s game.
Stoke do expect defender Abdoulaye Faye to play and he seems to have recovered from a thigh injury, and of course Faye was more than decent for us last season, after Big Sam brought him in from Bolton Wanderers, and his strength is he is very strong in the air. With Martins and Owen both starting we expect no long high balls into the box today.
Former Newcastle players Amdy Faye and Andy Griffin – who were average at best when at the Newcastle club, will be in Stoke’s starting eleven.
The good news for Newcastle is that striker Dave Kitson (knee) is ruled out with defender Ryan Shawcross (back). The absense of Kitson makes the Stoke atack look even weaker, and hopefully we can make it 3 clean sheets on the bounce.
In our poll 85% of our readers expect all 3 points this afternoon, and there’s still time to vote if you haven’t already.
This is a game we have to win this afternoon, and we really have no excuses if we cannot get 3 points.
What do you think? Comments welcome.