Alan Shearer has made 5 changes to the side that went down to Chelsea last week 2-0.
And there are some surprises as Alan has included Academy products Ameobi and Edgar in the starting line-up.
Shola Ameobi, Danny Guthrie, Sebastien Bassong, David Edgar and Damien Duff all return, with Jose Enrique (injured), Fabricio Coloccini, Jonas Gutierrez, Oba Martins and Peter Lovenkrands (injured) all making way.
We had a feeling that Alan would go for a tall striker up front but we half expected that would be Andy Carroll, as he had an excellent game in front of Alan Shearer for the Reserves last Monday night.
It’s a surprise that Gutierrez and Martins are both dropped, and some fans will not think that’s a good move.
But the players that have been playing for us just haven’t produced the goods so it’s worth a try, and Edgar has hardly let the side down when he’s played, but he had better not give away any penalties this afternoon.
It’s also an excellent chance for the Canadian youngster to prove what he can do for the club he’s been with since he was 14 years old.
It looks like Habib Beye will continue at the center of the defense, which we expected, and he will be joined by Bassong who is back from a groin injury. The two of them should be very strong and we suppose Ryan Taylor and Edgar will be the full backs, with David on the left hand side.
Guthrie makes his first start since January after a hamstring layoff. And Alan has both Nile Ranger and Andy Carroll on the subs bench so it looks like he’s willing to give the youngsters their chance.
Newcastle start the game second bottom of the league as Middlesbrough beat Hull City 3-1, but Bolton, Sunderland and Blackburn all lost, (Bolton scored 3 in the last 20 minutes after being 4-0 down at Stamford Bridge), and WBA and Portsmouth drew, which is probably the best result for Newcastle.
So most of the results went our way – but the lads must produce today – it’s now up to them and we must somehow get 3 points from this game, otherwise it will look very uncomfortable for the Newcastle club tonight.
We will not have a half time report – but we’ll back at full time.
Howay The Lads!!
Stoke: Thomas Sorensen, Andy Wilkinson, Danny Higginbotham, Ryan Shawcross, Abdoulaye Faye, Liam Lawrence, Rory Delap, Glen Whelan, Matthew Etherington, Ricardo Fuller, James Beattie
Subs: Steve Simonsen, Seyi Olofinjana, Richard Creswell, Danny Pugh, Stephen Kelly, Michael Tongue, Ibrahima Sonko
Newcastle United: Steve Harper, David Edgar, Ryan Taylor, Sebastien Bassong, Habib Beye, Nicky Butt, Kevin Nolan, Danny Guthrie, Damien Duff, Shola Ameobi, Michael Owen
Subs: Fabricio Coloccini, Alan Smith, Jonas Gutierrez, Geremi, Andy Carroll, Tim Krul, Nile Ranger
Referee: Chris Foy