Newcastle vs Metalist Kharkiv – Match Preview


Metalist Kharkiv

The game tonight against Metalist Kharkiv is the round of the last 32 in the Europa League – so if we can get through this tie and win the next two game tie, then  we’ll make it through to the quarter finals stage – and that would be good.

But those are four games we still have to negotiate in Europe before that,  and we expect Newcastle to be going all out tonight for a win to get us off to a good start against the Ukranian side.

And just so we remember how we did in Group D here are the finishing positions – and while we finished second top to Bordeaux – over the last three group games our squad was just a little decimated (yes – that’s an excuse).

PositionTeamPlayedGoal DifferencePoints
1Bordeaux6513
2Newcastle629
3Maritimo6-26
4Club Brugge6-54

Metalist Kharkiv finished top of their Group K on 13 points and they were on the same number of points as Bayer Leverkusen, but won the group on head to head competition as they drew 0-0 and won 2-0 in their games against the Bundesliga side – and their goal difference was one less than that of the German club.

So they are a good side,  and it’s hard to know how their winter-break will affect them tonight, and they currently in 4th place in the Ukrainian Premier League after 18 games before the break started in December.

This is what Alan Pardew said about the opposition today:

“We’re up against a new name in terms of European football – and it’s a name, I think, that’s going to stick around for a while.” “It’s a good platform for them but we don’t want to be the victims of that.”

“We’re an old name, a legendary name in some ways in competitions in Europe, and we want to keep it that way and make sure we renew our reputation.” “We were at Whitley Bay on Sunday and they played very well at a difficult venue.”

“They have a large influx of South American players who give the team a real characteristic of technique and that’s probably what we’re going to have to come up against.” “They’re very good at keeping the ball and keeping it away from us, and will probably take our tempo out of the game, so that’s their strength and on the break they’re fast.”

“So we need to be on our guard. As Juventus proved at Celtic, you have to be very clever in how you attack.”

It’s going to be a tough choice for the starting eleven tonight  for Alan Pardew, as he supposedly will try to give some players a game – but it looks like he will simply go for his strongest side available for this game.

This could be the starting eleven tonight with the substitutes:

Krul
Santon Coloccini Yanga-Mbiwa Haidara
Anita Cabaye Sissoko Marveaux
Cisse Ameobi (Sh)
Subs: Harper Perch Williamson Bigirimana Ferguson Obertan Campbell

What team would you field tonight?

We expect 18 year-old Adam Campbell to be on the bench tonight – and who knows the North Shields youngster may get his second first team appearance tonight – and it would be great if he gets on in the second half.

We thought Mike Williamson would get a start tonight – but it doesn’t seem like he will – so we expect captain Fabricio Coloccini to start this game and play alongside Yanga-Mbiwa who is making his starting debut for the side.

It will also be important for our lads to keep a clean sheet tonight, because of the away goals rule in European competition.

And the result of our poll on the outcome of the game is that over 90% of fans expect us to win this game, so anything else but a win will be extremely disappointing and will put doubts on whether we can get through.

We don’t think the starting eleven in the Ukraine next week will not include any players who will start the important home league game against Southampton on the following Sunday.

How Will Newcastle Fare In Home Leg Against Metalist Kharkiv?

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We need a good win tonight, and that will help the team in pushing on for the season – both in Europe and in the Premier League.

Howay The Lads!!

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153 comments so far

  • JackButler

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:16 PM

    Comment #1

    During the group stages we were a poor side playing poor football in the league, but now we are moving forward with the additions from January and the mentality around the side is far better.
    Think we’ll win tonight, but it wont be easy

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  • Mark

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    Comment #2

    I reckon we’ll have the strongest possible XI out tonight, and try and have a good advantage going into the second leg where a weaker team will be played

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  • toonLYF

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    Comment #3

    Their badge is awful. I really want to put them to the sword for that.

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  • Rotonda heights

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:20 PM

    Comment #4

    I think Pardew may have to get a restraining order for Ian toon!! Obsessive fan worship is getting a bit creepy!!

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    Comment #5

    LYF…Nothing to do with getting through to the next round, we just dislike their badge 🙂

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  • mindshaft

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:25 PM

    Comment #6

    Right – have dinner booked for 6pm, need to make sure wife doesnt have a starter, wolfs her main down and skips pudding – quickly back home for rumpy, then give her a kiss and get myself to match – should take about 15 mins on the metro – might make kick off if I can make the meal last less than 100 mins

    I know, I’m a right old romantic

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  • mindshaft

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:26 PM

    Comment #7

    Yup – reckon Pards will put strongest team out tonight hoping to get a decent win which will allow him to leave some players behind for the trip to Ukraine

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  • toonLYF

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:28 PM

    Comment #8

    Ibiza…

    It’s all about Graphic design, not footballing success 😉

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  • Mister Tuff

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:28 PM

    Comment #9

    Ian Toon – you do not have to answer this if it causes you any embarrassment. You have mentioned you are having a rendezvous with Catchy tonight – whilst it may be of no significance I do note today is Valentines Day.
    Did you organise your meeting through one of these online dating agencies.

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  • pawl250

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:28 PM

    Comment #10

    For me —-

    ——————— Krul ———————
    Santon – Mbiwa – Coloccini – Haidara
    ————— Anita – Tiote —————
    —— Sissoko – Cabaye – Marveaux —
    ——————– Cisse ——————-

    Sissoko/Marveaux are not playing on the wing, more a central role that can drift and rotate, this would make it difficult for the opposition to pick up individual players.

    I think STaylor needs to stay fit, would be too risky playing him all the time, Colo needs to concentrate on his football and Mbiwa deserves match time.

    Cabaye and can slot back into a 4-3-2-1 formation if needs be to play deeper, and a playmaker alongside Anita.

    Santon right back and give Haidara his chance, natural left footed left back is rare these days for us, I mean RTaylor, Santon, Jonas, Perch, Anita have all played in that position.

    Think we can get a 2 or 3 nil win we can take it easier in the next leg. Take over the secondary team with a couple of 1st team players on the bench to come on if needed.

    Tonight its imperative we keep a clean sheet! The back four and holding players look solid in that team and believe we can do that! Come on!!!

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  • JackButler

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    Comment #11

    We have to be as strong as possible tonight with no game at the weekend we can really go for it and try end the tie after 90 mins

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  • toonLYF

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:31 PM

    Comment #12

    …and speaking of graphic design…does anybody need any logos, posters, album covers, business cards, advertisements etc. etc. etc.? I’m working for free in order to build myself an active portfolio for when i return to University this year after taking a few years out.

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:33 PM

    Comment #13

    LYF….Should get to work on a new chant to let them know how little you think of their designs….you know..hit them where it hurts.

    Rotonda/Tuff…Don’t be down lads, I’m sure Ian will still make time for the two of you as well as Pardew and Catchy.

    Mindshaft…That’s so beautiful they could make a movie about it 🙂

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  • JackButler

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:34 PM

    Comment #14

    No Valentines Day headache for me as wife is away and Rebecca is booked in for 22:00 😀

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  • dinosaur

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:35 PM

    Comment #15

    The phenomenon of the striker shooting straight at the goalkeeper has been noted of late, particularly in the case of our Cisse. Is this because the goal keeper has positioned himself in such a perfect spot? Or is there some innate tendency of the brain to shoot at something visible? Which leads to the question as to wether the goalie should wear a dingy green, and try to look invisible, or a flamboyant luminous yellow, to try to be as conspicuous as possible. ‘Tis a puzzlement.

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:35 PM

    Comment #16

    JB…After a night with Rebecca a headache will be the least of your problems.

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  • JackButler

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:37 PM

    Comment #17

    Ibiza

    penicillin at the ready mate

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  • toonLYF

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:38 PM

    Comment #18

    how about this Ibiza…

    “your badge…it’s shit, not good enough for my rectum, you’s need to go back to the drawing board, and study the fcuking colour spectrum!”

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:40 PM

    Comment #19

    JB…That a boy. Don’t hold her up though, she’s supposedly booked for 22:07 at mine….it’s her busiest night of the year and I’m not going to be happy with a replacement this time. I do insist my mature women have at least 3 or their original teeth.

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:41 PM

    Comment #20

    LYF….Wow, first attempt. Nice job. Colour me impressed!

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  • JackButler

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    Comment #21

    seven minutes is more than enough time mate 😀

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  • pawl250

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    Comment #22

    If I put a full team out on current form (no restrictions) it would be –

    ——————– Krul ———————-
    Debuchy – Mbiwa – STaylor – Santon
    ————– Anita – Cabaye ————–
    Ben Arfa —– Sissoko ——- Gouffran
    ——————– Cisse ———————

    Bench – Elliot, Colo, Perch, Jonas, Tiote, Marveaux, Shola

    Its a pretty strong team, and bench for that matter, given Perch, Colo, Jonas, Tiote, Marveaux could start normally.

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  • sanchez

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    Comment #23

    I think he’ll put out in a 4-4-2…
    Elliot
    Santon M’biwa Taylor Haidara
    Obertan Anita Perch Marveaux
    Cisse Shola

    Can’t help but think we could do with a Cabaye or a Sissoko or a more fancy formation though.

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  • sanchez

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:45 PM

    Comment #24

    Actually Tiote for Perch

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  • JackButler

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:45 PM

    Comment #25

    Gotta say I’m really looking forward to seeing M’Biwa tonight

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:45 PM

    Comment #26

    JB…Once again…that a boy 🙂

    Pawl…Isn’t it great, with the exception of Shola (Bless, but…) that is a brilliant team.

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  • JackButler

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:47 PM

    Comment #27

    sanchez

    Think Pardew will go for it tonight, we don’t have a game at the weekend so think Sissoko, Tiote and Cabaye will both start, along with Krul in goal

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  • Mister Tuff

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:51 PM

    Comment #28

    I think Ian Toon might have been a bit rash in meeting Catchy tonight -does not seem to follow the advice/dangers about internet dating. What happens if Catchy is a delluded drag queen and we never hear from Ian Toon again, mmnn well thinking about it, that would not be so bad.
    What happens if Ian Toon is the deluded drag queen and has lured poor old Catchy into his trap.I really do not know which is the best alternative.

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  • rainrix

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:52 PM

    Comment #29

    I was going to discuss football with you guys but then i saw you all degrading and abusing my muse rebecca! YOU ARE ALL DEAD TO ME (*sobs*) 🙂

    I heard that both cabs and sissoko are supposed to start tonight in the chronicle i think it was. Either way by the looks of things it’ll be our strongest europa side this season.

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:52 PM

    Comment #30

    Mister…I’m an optimistic guy, so I’m going to go with that they may be both drag queens and it could be a match made in heaven.

    Lid for every pot and all that.

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  • Mark

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:53 PM

    Comment #31

    Krul
    Simpson – Taylor – Colo – Santon
    Perch – Tiote
    Sissoko – Cabaye – Guti
    Cisse
    Thats my prediction for tonight starting xi

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  • Mister Tuff

    Feb 14, 2013 at 2:58 PM

    Comment #32

    Ibiza @30 -you are probably right, I never considered a third alternative. I now have a vision of two blokes in dresses and high heels, wearing long wigs and poorly applied make up and lip-stick running towards each other in the car park at SJP.

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 3:00 PM

    Comment #33

    Mister…Nice to see you caught up in the magic of Valentines day. Love is in the air. It could just be pollution…but let’s stick with love.

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  • mattnufc

    Feb 14, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    Comment #34

    My prediction:
    Elliot
    Simpson Collocini Mbiwa Haidara
    Obertan Tiote Kebabs Jonas
    Sissoko
    Cisse

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  • Ian Toon

    Feb 14, 2013 at 3:02 PM

    Comment #35

    Mister Tuff- oooohh I do hope so. Match what football match!!!!

    0
  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 3:03 PM

    Comment #36

    Ian.. 🙂

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  • rainrix

    Feb 14, 2013 at 3:03 PM

    Comment #37

    I reckon krul will actually start. I don’t see why he’d be giving a press conference with pards if he wasn’t starting.

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  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 3:05 PM

    Comment #38

    Rainrix…I can see no reason why Krul wouldn’t start tonight. Give him the away game off, we need a clean sheet tonight (i say “need”, but you know what I mean).

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  • rainrix

    Feb 14, 2013 at 3:08 PM

    Comment #39

    Ibiza… Ideally we need a clean sheet, away goals are perilous as we found out last time we were in europe. Admittedly it wont be such a disaster if we do concede provided we score a few goals ourselves.

    0
  • Ibizatoon - Back by popular demand

    Feb 14, 2013 at 3:09 PM

    Comment #40

    Rainrix…And what are your views on Sir Shola, our current top scorer in Europe within the current squad. I can imagine you’ll be disappointed if he doesn’t start?

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