Newcastle vs Stoke City – Match Preview

The game tomorrow afternoon against Stoke City, should tell us a little more about the Newcastle side this season.

And there were certainly some surprise results today with both Arsenal and Chelsea being beaten, and Liverpool only being able to get a draw at Anfield against Sunderland – and that’s a pity. 😀

Fellow promotion side WBA were worthy if unlikely winners by 3-2 at the Emirates Stadium,after being 3-0 up, but if Arsenal are going to make a challenge on the Premier League they have to get a top class goalkeeper – Shay Given is available in January.

And West Ham finally won with a good 1-0 home win over London rivals  Tottenham, where they just about deserved all 3 points with a spirited and gutsy display.

Newcastle are coming off a two game winning streak, having beaten Everton 1-0 at Goodison Park last Saturday in the league, and then having their best result in many a season when essentially a Newcastle second eleven beat a Chelsea second eleven 4-3 in the Carling Cup, in what was a very exciting cup tie – and that’s a huge understatement – it was a game for the ages.

Chris Hughton has to pick between those two separate teams as to which players will start tomorrow afternoon, and it’s a difficult choice, but one that creates what is a good problem for the manager to have.

With Steve Harper sadly out for the rest of the year, Tim Krul will of course start in goal, and apart from Tim, Chris Hughton may decide to start the lads that started the game last Saturday at Everton, when we got our first win there in nine years.

But we have a feeling Chris will slightly tweak that side just a little bit, and here’s the starting eleven we expect Hughton to go with for tomorrow afternoon:

Taylor (R) Coloccini Williamson Enrique
Ben Arfa Tiote Barton Nolan (c) Gutierrez
Subs: Soderberg Campbell Perch Routledge Ameobi Smith Lovenkrands

We think Ryan Taylor will nudge out the returning James Perch at right back, and we think Jonas’ performance on Wednesday night was good enough for him to keep the left wing spot, and move Ben Arfa over to the right wing in place of Routledge, who unluckily misses out.

It’s in fact unlucky on any player who doesn’t make the line-up tomorrow, because both our sides gave terrific displays in the last two games, but there’s only room for 18 in the squad, and they’ll get their next chance when Arsenal visit Newcastle in the 4th round of the Carling cup in the week starting October 25th.  What a game that promises to be.

And in passing, that happens to be the week Andy Carroll will be up before the Newcastle Magistrates on his assault charge, come to think of it.

We’re not sure whether Chris will keep with his 4-5-1 system tomorrow at home, and we’d much prefer to see the more attacking 4-4-2 formation he used last season at St. James’ Park.

But as long as we keep the play wide with our wingers, Newcastle hopefully will not get into the problems they confronted a couple of weeks ago against Blackpool, when we attacked too much down the middle and missed all of the seven good chances the team created.

Stoke City are a good side, and they will bombard Newcastle with high balls from both corners and throw ins from Rory Delap, so we expect Chris to include players at the back who are good headers of the ball.

Sadly there is no room on the bench for players who were excellent on Wednesday night such as Shane Ferguson, Nile Ranger and Haris Vuckic, but Newcastle’s squad has become very strong this season, and just how strong we’ll  find out against the Potters tomorrow.

Stoke City at home is a game we should win, but that was also true  against Blackpool in our last home game, but 3 points is what we want to see at 6:00 pm tomorrow evening, and anything less than that will be  a disappointment.

Comments very welcome.

21 comments so far

  • toonster88

    Sep 25, 2010 at 8:26 PM

    Comment #1

    a must win game.must not repeat a blackpool if possible.stoke came back to draw 2-2 last time.should take it easy.i fear the last 2 away wins mite make our boys too over confident.BUT WIN PLEEEEEAAAASSSEEEE.we go 5th with a win

  • murvar

    Sep 25, 2010 at 8:32 PM

    Comment #2

    I agree with 10 of your choices – especially the one that puts Jonas and King Arfa on the pitch together at little Wayne’s expense. But I can’t see Ryan Taylor getting the nod over Perch; CH brought in Perch and clearly believes in him; he;s played all 5 PL games so far and hasn’t let anyone down; and RT isn’t a right back. So I hope you’re wrong on that one. Otherwise – let’s play them off the park. I wouldn’t be surprised to see us play with 3 centre backs at some stage if Stoke play their usual hump it into the box routine ie a home debut for Sol.

  • Oleg G

    Sep 25, 2010 at 8:47 PM

    Comment #3

    What a day !!!

    how many teams lost points today!

    Arsenal, Cheski, Tottenham, Liverpool.

    WBA with 10 points.
    Liverpool with 6 points
    Everton last place
    Man U are in the best position right now, still without a lost.

    After tomorrow we can be Number 5 or number 12

  • jimmymac

    Sep 25, 2010 at 8:51 PM

    Comment #4

    I wouldnt mind seeing colo go RB for this game and bring campbell in for his strength and experience against this sort of opposition. Plus, gives us a bit more at set pieces having 3 CB’s on the pitch.

    I’d keep Routledge in the team, cause they are playing with very slow full backs (4 CBS i think) and i think he can do some serious damage with his pace.


    Colo Campbell Williamson Enrique

    Routledge Barton Tiote Ben Arfa



    I think this is best team to play stoke.

  • neeraj

    Sep 25, 2010 at 9:18 PM

    Comment #5

    Newcastle this season has hurt most of his opponents with it WB bombing forward to deliver crosses and our wingers cutting inside

    I will go with the same team that played against Everton….

    But Ameobi and Raylor, Really Deserve their chance…..

  • neeraj

    Sep 25, 2010 at 9:25 PM

    Comment #6

    *his = its

  • Warwick Hunt

    Sep 25, 2010 at 9:31 PM

    Comment #7

    Really looking forward to seeing Bn Arfa and Tiote play on Sky instead of dodgy stream!

  • BiffBaffBoff

    Sep 25, 2010 at 10:35 PM

    Comment #8

    Hey guys,

    I really hope Ryan Taylor starts tomorrow, whenever he’s played for us hes always gave 100% and his set pieces are so much better then Barton’s so I think he deserves a chance to play, not that Perch has done much wrong but one thing he has done wrong is make too many silly fouls, which I think is due to the fact he’s still adapting to the pace of the PL. This is another thing Taylor has over Perch – more PL experience.

  • Howay The Lads

    Sep 25, 2010 at 11:02 PM

    Comment #9

    My team would be:



    Routledge——Barton——–Tiote——-Ben Arfa



    Jonas has shown nothing this season to warrant a starting place. I’d be willing to put him in if he showed something, but he hasn’t. Give him a good amount from the bench, but nothing more

  • Spuggy

    Sep 25, 2010 at 11:09 PM

    Comment #10

    Can’t wait for kickoff. Hope its an open game but against stoke who know, we need to be on the money for throw ins and set pieces, stop that threat and three points are ours.

    Remember folks, for those with virgin or sky without a sky sports subscription THIS GAME IS FREE ON SKY who are hosting an sky sports open day – the Aston Villa game is on too – all in glorious HD too (if you have HD package).

  • Spuggy

    Sep 25, 2010 at 11:12 PM

    Comment #11


    I would hate anyone to miss out because the didn’t know. Arfa in HD!!!

  • tjshawsey

    Sep 25, 2010 at 11:29 PM

    Comment #12

    Interesting idea jimmymac, colo RB. I reckon that would probably be are best line-up, but chris wouldn’t do it. Otherwise its Raylor for me.

  • dave 1961

    Sep 25, 2010 at 11:32 PM

    Comment #13

    i will have to get the wife to record it while i am at the game, that will make her happy when i hogg her tv. i dont have sky on mine but if its posted on usenet i wiill watch it on my big screen, with the cinema on full volume.

  • mattnufc

    Sep 25, 2010 at 11:59 PM

    Comment #14

    I’d agree with Howay the Lads lineup. If we’re behind (which we won’t be) then I hope Chris brings on our subs earlier! A bit of Ameobi on 60 mins.
    2-1 win to us

  • Brutooon

    Sep 26, 2010 at 12:48 AM

    Comment #15

    ryan taylor score against chelsea!

  • stk85

    Sep 26, 2010 at 1:39 AM

    Comment #16

    agree wit HWTL line up…. but who was right mid on weds night v chelski? ranger…. wish he’d get a few more games up front for last ten mins of games.

    with tiote proteccting the back four, raylor and enrique bombing forward, barton creating and nolan supporting carroll, stoke better be shi… i mean bring their spare nappies!

    ben arfa’s a cert. routlegde or jonas?

  • Sav

    Sep 26, 2010 at 1:50 AM

    Comment #17

    CH may surprise us by playing Ranger on the right. Hoots seems to be encouraging him to play that role. He can make it to the back post for Ben Arfa’s crosses and he has the heading ability to safeguard against Stoke’s bombardiers.

  • baro

    Sep 26, 2010 at 1:57 AM

    Comment #18

    This will be a physical game and crucial match. Stoke are a really hard working team. They play very physical. We will win the ball on the ground more with our speed that Stoke lack. I go for a 3-0 win for TOON!
    Carroll with 2 goals, Ben Arfa with the other goal.

  • shearermania

    Sep 26, 2010 at 2:02 AM

    Comment #19

    Raylor: 2 starts – 2 goals
    Perch: 5 starts – 5 yellows and a bundle of errors.

    nuff said

  • toontim

    Sep 26, 2010 at 11:29 AM

    Comment #20

    Ithink the game will be really tough, they are fighting to move up the table and dispite our quality and strenght in the team i recon a 1- nil win for us but a battle. Looking forward to watching Arfa today,

    Com on the Toon

  • Spuggy

    Sep 26, 2010 at 12:31 PM

    Comment #21

    Raylor: Better at going forward, and yes is more of a cross/goals threat

    Perch: Better defensively in my opinion, which will be sorely needed against a physical stoke side who rely heavily on set pieces for goals.

    Summary: It’s our defence that needs to be sound today, I would play Perch, as we have enough firepower now elsewhere. Barton, Nolan, Afra, Carroll, Routledge, Jonas (if played), Enrique are all forward threats. Let the rest defend properly.


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