Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has brought in Fab Coloccini to partner Steven Taylor in central defense for Newcastle United, in this afternoon’s home game against Manchester City.
Coloccini hasn’t played since being sent off in the game at Bolton four weeks ago, but today replaces Sol Campbell, who is dropped for the game.
Wayne Routledge, who came on as a substitute in Alan Pardew’s first game in charge two weeks against Liverpool, will play on the right wing, as Newcastle will play with just one striker up front in Andy Carroll.
Newcastle will play in their 4-5-1 formation with Barton, Tiote and Nolan forming the central midfield and Gutierrez and Routledge out on the wings.
We have to think that Alan wants to combat the top midfield of Manchester City, if we are to have any chance of winning this afternoon, and of course captain Kevin Nolan will play as a withdrawn striker.
Leon Best is one of the subs, but neither Sol Campbell nor Peter Lovenkrands make the bench this afternoon, although Sol may still be sick.
For Man City Joleon Lescott, as expected, replaces the suspended Kolo Toure, and former Newcastle winger James Milner also gets a start.
Former top goalkeeper Shay Given is on the bench for City, with England International Joe Hart again preferred in goal, and former Newcastle youth player Adam Johnson is also on the bench for the Eastlands side.
Nigel De Jong, the Dutch International, who broke Ben Arfa’s leg in two places the last time the two sides met in early October at Eastlands, is back again for City, and will no doubt get an appropriate response from the Newcastle fans.
A win would be another fantastic result for the Newcastle side, and that’s what we are hoping for this afternoon, although we expect City to be a lot better than they were on Monday night when they lost 2-1 to Everton.
Howay The Lads!!
Newcastle United: Krul; Simpson, S Taylor, Coloccini, Enrique; Routledge, Barton, Tiote, Gutierrez; Nolan; Carroll.
Subs: Harper, Williamson Perch Guthrie Smith Ranger Best
Manchester City -Hart; Kolarov, Kompany, Lescott, Boateng; De Jong, Barry, Toure (Y), Silva, Tevez (c) Milner.
Subs: Given, Vierra, Johnson, Richards, Zabaleta, Jo, Balotelli