St. James' Park
Newcastle will be aiming to consolidate a mid-table position when they tackle high-flying Tottenham at St James' Park on Saturday. Aside from a shock FA Cup elimination at the hands of Stevenage, Alan Pardew's men have been in encouraging form since the turn of the year. The Magpies have collected seven points from their last three Premier League games to nudge back into the top half of the standings and a couple more victories in quick succession would banish any threat of relegation, whilst also boosting the chances of an unexpected push for Europe.
Newcastle's last league defeat came against Tottenham when the sides met less than a month ago, with goals from Aaron Lennon and Gareth Bale securing a 2-0 success for Harry Redknapp's men. Spurs' good form over the festive period fuelled belief among their supporters about a possible title challenge, but they remain outsiders after taking just a point from recent games against Everton and Manchester United. Tottenham are currently fifth in the table and eight points adrift of top spot, but they can climb back into the UEFA Champions League places by winning on Tyneside as Chelsea do not play until Monday.
Newcastle in piena emergenza infortuni, da Carroll ad Alan Smith passando per Gosling e Steven Taylor. Complice oltretutto l'assenza per squalifica di Tiote, in mezzo al campo ad affiancare Nolan ci sarà pertanto Guthrie ("Danny Guthrie will play. He was excellent in the second half at Sunderland, and I hope he will take it into Saturday.") con Ameobi e Best a fare coppia in avanti.
Possible starting XI :
Harper - Simpson, Coloccini, Williamson, Jose Enrique - Barton, Guthrie, Nolan, Jonas - Ameobi, Best
Due dubbi di formazione in casa Tottenham: sia Benoit Assou-Ekotto che Wilson Palacios lamentano un fastidio al ginocchio, la loro presenza non è pertanto sicura. Redknapp spera di recuperare soprattutto il franco-camerunense, in caso contrario sarebbe costretto a schierare Bale come Left-back. E' stato convocato anche il neo acquisto Steven Pienaar, per il sudafricano comunque è previsto almeno inizialmente un posto in panchina.
Possible starting XI :
Gomes - Hutton, Dawson, Gallas, Assou Ekotto - Lennon, Palacios, Modric, Bale - van der Vaart - Defoe