Newcastle United’s brand new center-back, Mike Williamson, is thrown in at the deep end, as he makes the starting line-up for the visit of Crystal Palace tonight, and our other new boy Wayne Routledge is on the bench against his former club.
Williamson, a 6ft 4ins centre-back, starts in a back four that includes Tamas Kadar, Fabricio Coloccini and Jose Enrique, with veteran Steve Harper back in goal.
It could be that Tamas Kadar will line up at right-back, with Coloccini and Williamson in central defense – that’s how the official site have lined up the team. It certainly will be interesting to see how Mike plays tonight, but we’re sure the crowd will give him all the support he will need.
He must have impressed in training this week, for Chris to put him straight into the side, and it’s a terrific opportunity for the former Portsmouth and Watford player – we really hope he does very well tonight.
Peter Lovenkrands, with four goals from his previous two games, returns from compassionate leave to join Andy Carroll, scorer of two goals at West Brom on Saturday, in the attack.
Newcastle’s midfield four consists of captain Alan Smith, top scorer Kevin Nolan, Danny Guthrie and Jonas Gutierrez.
As we expected Ryan Taylor (suspension), Steven Taylor (knee), Danny Simpson (ankle) and Shola Ameobi (shoulder) all miss this vital game, that can get Newcastle’s promotion drive back on track.
Newcastle have a strong bench of Tim Krul, Ben Tozer, Nicky Butt, Fabrice Pancrate, Nile Ranger, Wayne Routledge and Ryan Donaldson for this vital home game.
Crystal Palace starlet Victor Moses has been barred from playing for Crystal Palace tonight, as the administrators put ion charge of the debt-ridden club, have ordered the promising winger not to turn out against Newcastle at St James’ Park, presumably in case he gets injured.
They will be selling the England U21 International for as much as they can get, so they can get their debts under control. It’s a very long shot that Newcastle could get this player, even if they express interest.
NUFC: Steve Harper, Tamas Kadar, Fabricio Coloccini, Mike Williamson, Jose Enrique, Danny Guthrie, Alan Smith (c), Kevin Nolan, Jonas Gutierrez, Peter Lovenkrands, Andy Carroll
Subs: Tim Krul, Ben Tozer, Nicky Butt, Fabrice Pancrate, Nile Ranger, Wayne Routledge, Ryan Donaldson
CPFC: Julian Speroni, Nathaniel Clyne, Jonhannes Ertl, Danny Butterfield, Clint Hill, Neil Danns, Shaun Derry (c), Nick Carle, Darren Ambrose, Calvin Andrew, Lee Hills
Subs: Matt Lawrence, Alan Lee, Kieran Djilali
Referee: Russell Booth