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UEFA Europa League

  • 14 February 2013
  • • 20:05
  • • St. James' Park, Newcastle-upon-Tyne
  • Referee: T. Hagen
  • • Attendance: 30157
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Newcastle - Metalist Preview: Magpies aim to build first-leg advantage against Ukrainians

Alan Pardew's side will look to take a healthy lead to the second leg in Kharkiv after improving in the Premier League in recent weeks

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

NEWCASTLE UNITED

Krul
Santon, Taylor, Yanga-Mbiwa, Haidara
Tiote, Anita,
Marveaux, Sissoko, Obertan
Cisse

METALIST KHARKIV
 


Goryainov
Villagra, Gueye, Torsiglieri, Fininho
Torres
Marlos, Blanco, Cleiton, Willian
Cristaldo


Newcastle head into the game expecting to be without Yoan Gouffran (leg) after he sustained an injury against Tottenham, whilst Hatem Ben Arfa (hamstring) and Danny Simpson (toe) will not feature. Dan Gosling (knee) is still out, as are long-term absentees Haris Vuckic and Ryan Taylor (both knee ligament).

Metalist are in the middle of a winter break in the Ukrainian League and have no real injury concerns to worry about.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Newcastle have not lost a home game in European competition since their 2005 Intertoto Cup defeat to Deportivo La Coruna
  • Metalist have now made it into the round of 32 for the fourth time, their best finish coming last season when they were knocked out in the quarter-finals by Sporting Lisbon.
  • The Magpies last faced Ukrainian opposition back in the 2002/03 Champions League, when they beat Dynamo Kiev 2-1 thanks to goals from Gary Speed and Alan Shearer.
  • Shola Ameobi (pictured right) has already scored twice in the Europa League this season and can take his European tally up to 15 with a goal in this game.
  • Metalist coach Myron Markevich spent six months as the Ukrainian national team coach in 2010 before stepping down to focus on club duties.
  • The Ukrainian side possess one of the best defensive records in the competition, they shipped three goals in the group stage, only Bayer Leverkusen and Lazio conceded less.

Players to watch

M. Yanga-Mbiwa

Position: Defender

Games: 0

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French international centre-back Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa has yet to start for Newcastle since joining from Montpellier in the January transfer window. However as the Magpies try to juggle both domestic and European commitments, the 23-year-old is likely to get his bow. Yanga-Mbiwa made an instant contribution in their recent win over Aston Villa, producing a fine tackle to preserve Newcastle's lead late on and Alan Pardew will look for more of the same as they try to thwart a potent Metalist attack.

Cleiton Xavier

Position: Midfielder

Games: 0

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Metalist may have sold Brazilian starlet Taison to rivals Shakhtar Donetsk in the winter transfer window, but in compatriot Cleiton Xavier they possess a player who has ability to unlock any defence. The attacking midfielder pulls the strings for Myron Markevich's side, and has been in fantastic form this campaign, netting 12 goals in all competitions in addition to providing five assists. Newcastle will need to shut down the 29-year-old if they to take a lead to the second leg in Ukraine.

Editor's Prediction

Newcastle have been much improved in the past few weeks in the Premier League, earning a fantastic win over Chelsea and competing well with Tottenham in defeat last weekend. The additions they have made in January have made them a much more formidable outfit, and although Metalist possess a talented squad, the Magpies should be able to wrap up a first-leg victory.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Newcastle United

Metalist

Wins
1
1
0
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Newcastle United FC NEW
Newcastle United FC Newcastle United
Draw
FK Metalist Kharkiv MTK
FK Metalist Kharkiv Metalist
79%

Top 3 Predictions

Newcastle United FC NEW
2 - 0
FK Metalist Kharkiv MTK
Newcastle United FC NEW
2 - 1
FK Metalist Kharkiv MTK
Newcastle United FC NEW
3 - 0
FK Metalist Kharkiv MTK

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