Aarons, Taylor, Tiote And Mitrovic Start

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Steve McClaren has named his team for the crucial game against West Brom today – which literally is a must-win game for Newcastle and for Steve McClaren too.

Aarons comes in at left back and Cheick Tiote replaces Henri Saivet who is dropped – and that’s a surprise after his decent performance at Goodison Park.

Newcastle (4-2-3-1): Rob Elliot; Daryl Janmaat, Steven Taylor, Fabricio Coloccini (c), Rolando Aarons; Cheick Tiote, Jonjo Shelvey; Moussa Sissoko, Georginio Wijnaldum, Andros Townsend; Aleksandar Mitrovic
Substitutes: Karl Darlow, Liam Gibson, Callum Williams, Dan Barlaser, Henri Saivet, Ayoze Perez, Seydou Doumbia

Referee: Lee Mason (Lancashire)

So that’s four changes from the team that was so poor in mid-week and lost 3-0 at Everton and there are three U21 players on the bench – Liam Gibson, Callum Williams and Dan Barlaser

The fact we have so many senior players missing is simply a disgrace for a club the stature of Newcastle United.

It looks like we are playing in a 4-2-3-1 formation and the big challenge today is to see if we can score a goal.

This is what Newcastle manager Steve McClaren said yesterday about the game today:

“The players know the urgency of the situation.” “Tomorrow is a huge game for us and we need to perform like we did against Manchester United and West Ham if we want to come away with three points.”

“With 14 games to go we have to be consistent in our performances. Tomorrow is a tough game, a big game and 50,000 Geordies will demand a performance of attitude, character and football.”

“Everybody can see that the talent is there in the squad but talent isn’t everything, you need something else. We also need attitude, character and to hold our nerve but make sure we perform in every game.”

“The key thing is that we have to pass and keep hold of the ball better, we can’t give it away. If you give it away against this West Brom team, they can be dangerous on the counter attack.”

“They’ve got a lot of good players Darren Fletcher has been a really good signing, Salomon Rondon has come back to form and Stephane Sessegnon is dangerous, so they’re a very good team who work together and they’ve got a certain style which works.”

“It’s not an easy game for us so we need to be right, we need to be patient and get the win. We want to win badly and generally the team who wants to win the most will win.”

Not many people would agree with Steve that West Brom are a very good team.

And normally you would expect more fans to think we can beat West Brom at home – but maybe it’s the “Everton” effect.

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If we play like we did at Goodison Park we will lose this game.

We need a win today – a draw is simply not good enough.

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