Anzhi Makhachkala and Newcastle have never encountered each other in the past, but Guus Hiddink’s side will hope they can keep their unbeaten home run in the Europa League going with a win against Newcastle.
Anzhi will hope the likes of Lassana Diarra and Yuri Zhirkov will help the side settle against English opposition with both players experiencing the Premier League at one stage in their careers. Hiddink’s men have already beaten a Liverpool side earlier in the campaign and will look to do the same to the Magpies.
Newcastle have struggled away from home so far in the competition and lost their last Premier League game 1-0 against Swansea at the Liberty Stadium. They also have the lowest tally of goals compared to the other teams left in Europa, but Alan Pardew will hope Shola Ameobi can get their last 16 tie off to a good start with a crucial away goal, after Papiss Cisse was announced as a doubt for tonight’s game.
KICK-OFF: Thursday, 5:00pm
The two teams have never crossed paths in their histories.
Anzhi have been in the competition since the second qualifying round and remain one of the longest surviving teams this year.
Newcastle’s 1-0 win at FC Metalist Kharliv in their second leg saw them end a bad run of form away from home in Europe. Before the round of 32 second leg they had lost twice and drawn 3 times.
Anzhi are unbeaten at home in the competition so far beating Hannover, Udinese, Liverpool, Young Boys, AZ Alkmaar, Vitesse Arnhem and Honved.
Newcastle’s Shola Ameobi is the clubs top scorer in the competition with 3 goals.
Anzhi to win: 1.61
Newcastle to win: 5
TV: Live on ITV 4 at 5:00pm, Highlights on ITV 4 on Friday at 5:55pm