Ben Arfa – back in starting line-up
The Newcastle manager has brought Ben Arfa into the starting line-up in place of the suspended Cheick Tiote for the game against Stoke City today – a good and bold move by Alan Pardew.
And Steven Taylor finally makes the subs bench and may even see some playing time in the second half today.
Shola had been half expected to come back into the side if it was a 4-4-2 formation, but Ben Arfa is given a big chance by the manager to shine this afternoon, in what is another big game for our lads.
Newcastle will continue to play in a 4-3-3 formation after playing so well like that At Selhurst Park last week, and it looks like the middle three will be Moussa Sissoko, Yohan Cabaye and Vurnon Anita with Ben Arfa, Loic Remy and Yoan Gouffran up front.
Stoke will play in a 4-5-1 formation with former Sunderland goalkeeper Thomas Sorensen making a rare appearance for the Potters, in place of the injured Asmir Begovic.
This is an attacking side put out today by Newcastle, and we have to hope we can get all points come 5:00 pm local time this afternoon.
Howay The Lads!!
Newcastle: (4-3-3): Tim Krul; Mathieu Debuchy, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini (c), Davide Santon; Moussa Sissoko, Vurnon Anita, Yohan Cabaye; Yoan Gouffran, Hatem Ben Arfa; Loic Remy
Substitutes: Rob Elliot, Massadio Haidara, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Steven Taylor, Gabriel Obertan, Papiss Cisse, Shola Ameobi
Stoke (4-5-1): Thomas Sorensen; Geoff Cameron, Ryan Shawcross, Marc Wilson, Eric Pieters; Jonathan Walters, Steven N’Zonzi, Glenn Whelan, Charlie Adam, Oussama Assaidi; Peter Crouch
Substitutes: Jack Butland, Marc Muniesa, Wilson Palacios, Kenwyne Jones, Marko Arnautovic, Andy Wilkinson, Stephen Ireland
Referee: Martin Atkinson (Yorkshire)