West Midlanders and their beleaguered French manager could be nudged nearer to the drop zone if they fail to beat the Magpies on home turf...
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|Aston Villa: Friedel; Walker, Dunne, Collins, L Young; Downing, Reo-Coker, Makoun, A Young; Agbonlahor, Bent.
|Newcastle: Harper; Simpson, Coloccini, Williamson, Enrique; R Taylor, Barton, Guthrie, Gutierrez; Ameobi, Lovenkrands.
- Aston Villa are only two points away from the relegation zone and only three points away from bottom place.
- Gerard Houllier’s side have only lost four out of their 15 Premier League games at Villa Park this season.
- Ashley Young is currently top goalscorer for Aston Villa, having claimed eight goals this season, six of which have come in the Premier League.
- The Villans will be looking to claim their first victory in five games, with their last win coming at home to Blackburn in February.
- Victory for Aston Villa could see them jump from 16th place in the Premier League to 13th
- Newcastle United will be hoping for a repeat of their previous meeting this season, at St James' Park, when they routed Aston Villa 6-0.
- The Toon Army return to the scene of one of their most disappointing days, when a Damien Duff own goal confirmed relegation for Alan Shearer’s side in 2009.
- The St James' Park side scored four goals in their victory over Wolverhampton last week, having lost four goals to Stoke the week before.
- Newcastle will be without the services of top scorer Kevin Nolan, who is serving the first game of a two-match suspension.
- Alan Pardew’s side still have a number of injuries, with Leon Best, Hatem Ben Arfa, Alan Smith and Dan Gosling all still missing.
August 22, 2010: Newcastle United 6-0 Aston Villa
Andy Carroll became the hero of St James' Park as the striker hit a hat-trick in their first home game in the top flight after having secured promotion from the Championship. Kevin Nolan secured a double, with Joey Barton starting off the scoring, while John Carew missed a first half opportunity to put Villa ahead from the penalty spot.