Newcastle are currently second top of Group D one point behind Bordeaux, and were the first team to qualify for the Europa league knock-out rounds, which will also see Chelsea in the last 32, as they finished third in their Group in the Champions League.
And since Newcastle are already through to the last 32 and we have a big league game next Monday night at Craven Cottage, manager Alan Pardew is taking the opportunity to rest some key players and will use a lot of our younger players tonight.
Here are the current standing in Group D of the Europa league:
Newcastle are without Ryan Taylor, Haris Vuckic, Dan Gosling, Steven Taylor, Yohan Cabaye, Ben Arfa and Gabby Obertan, who are out inured right, and Demba Ba, Davide Santon, Cheick Tiote and Jonas Gutierrez are also not available, having picked up slight injuries on Monday night in the 3-0 defeat of Wigan, so 11 players are not available through injury for tonight’s game.
Alan Pardew left snowy Newcastle yesterday with the following 20 man squad:
Mehdi Abeid, Romain Amalfitano, Sammy Ameobi, Shola Ameobi, Vurnon Anita, Gael Bigirimana, Adam Campbell, Papiss Cisse, Fabricio Coloccini, Rob Elliot, Shane Ferguson, Tim Krul, Sylvain Marveaux, Yven Moyo, Connor Newton, James Perch, Nile Ranger, Danny Simpson, James Tavernier and Mike Williamson.
The manager has already said he will start Sylvain Marveaux, Gael Bigirimana, Nile Ranger, Shane Ferguson and Sammy Ameobi – so here is our best guess at tonight’s starting line-up:
Tavernier Williamson (c) Perch Ferguson
Marveaux Bigirimana Anita Moyo
Ranger Ameobi (Sa)
Subs: Harper Simpson Coloccini Newton Cisse Amalfitano Campbell
That would be a starting debut for 20 year-old Yven Moyo who joined us two years ago from Sochaux as a free agent.
Since we already through to the knock-out rounds – this is an opportunity for some of the younger players and fringe players to show what they can do in a Newcastle shirt.
And we’d love to keep our unbeaten run in the Europa league, but this is very much a second team tonight, so the lads will do well to get a draw, although we would expect Bordeaux to also give a run-out to some of their fringe players – since they are already through to the final 32.
How do you think this game will go – let us know.
Howay The Lads!!
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org