Premier League: Newcastle v Chelsea match preview
A look ahead to ahead the Premier League fixture at St James' Park
Friday 01 February 2013
The Magpies will be looking to build on the vital win at Villa Park during the week, which was their first win in their last six. Moussa Sissoko and Yoan Gouffran are expected to their make home debuts.
After failing to perform consistently with many blaming Chelsea's gruelling schedule over the past two months, Benitez could be forced to rotate, which could see Demba Ba start against his old club, for the first time since his transfer last month.
Despite bringing in six reinforcements in the transfer window, Alan Pardew still has a lot of squad selection issues to deal with. Hatem Ben Arfa, Dan Gosling, Danny Simpson and Ryan Taylor will miss the game due to injuries. Cheick Tiote is unavailable as he is still on international duty at the AFcon with Ivory Coast.
John Terry could return to captain the side in the league after successfully coming through 90 minutes of action against Brentford in the FA cup last week. Juan Mata picked up knock in the draw against Reading and could miss out.
PAST THREE MEETINGS…
Chelsea 2 (Hazard, Torres) Newcastle 0 Premier League, August 2012
Chelsea 0 Newcastle 2 (Cisse 2) Premier League, May 2012
Newcastle 0 Chelsea 3 (Drogba, Kalou, Sturridge), Premier League, December 2011
Papiss Cisse has netted twice in his last four league games since the departure of Ba to Chelsea, after finding the net just three times in his previous eighteen matches.
Newcastle haven't beaten the European Champions at home since May 2006, a 1-0 win thanks the goal-scoring talents of Titus Bramble.
Chelsea have drawn four of their last five games in all competitions.
Newcastle to win: 4.2
Chelsea to win: 2.0
Papiss Cisse stole the headlines last season scoring two goals in a rare win for the Geordies at Stamford Bridge. Both of the Senegalese striker's efforts were goal-of-the-season contenders.
TV: Highlights BBC 1 – 10.35pm
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