Newcastle v Liverpool preview

Team news for Saturday evening's Premier League clash between Newcastle and Liverpool at St James' Park (kick-off 5.30pm).

Last Updated: 10/12/10 at 10:18

Barton: Pardew will hope he's fit

Barton: Pardew will hope he's fit

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New Newcastle boss Alan Pardew will hope for a major fitness boost as he prepares for his first game in charge against Liverpool on Saturday night.

Midfielder Joey Barton missed last weekend's 3-1 defeat at West Brom with a slight groin injury which delayed his return from a three-match ban, while skipper Kevin Nolan is expected to be fit following the ankle problem which has sidelined him for the last two games.

Danny Guthrie was stretchered off at the Hawthorns with an ankle injury, but the damage is not as serious as was first feared and he could yet retain his place in the squad.

Steve Harper played a reserve team game in midweek on his return from shoulder surgery and is continuing his quest for full fitness, and Leon Best (ankle) is also on the comeback trail.

But Fabricio Coloccini and Mike Williamson serve the final leg of their own three-match bans and Dan Gosling (knee), Ryan Taylor (ankle ligaments) Hatem Ben Arfa (double leg fracture) are still out.

Striker Fernando Torres returns to Liverpool's starting line-up on Tyneside.

The Spain international missed Monday's victory over Aston Villa to be at the birth of his second child but comes straight back into the team, with Ryan Babel most likely to make way.

Captain Steven Gerrard is still a week away from making his comeback from a hamstring injury, so manager Roy Hodgson is likely to retain all but one of the side who comfortably beat Villa.

Newcastle (from): Krul, Soderberg, Simpson, Perch, Ferguson, Enrique, S. Taylor, Campbell, Kadar, Barton, Tiote, Smith, Routledge, Gutierrez, Guthrie, Nolan, Vuckic, Tavernier, Donaldson, Carroll, Ameobi, Lovenkrands, Ranger, Xisco.

Liverpool (from): Reina, Johnson, Skrtel, Kyrgiakos, Konchesky, Lucas, Meireles, Kuyt, Rodriguez, Torres, Ngog, Jones, Aurelio, Kelly, Poulsen, Jovanovic, Cole, Babel, Shelvey.

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Premier League Fixtures

Monday, 29 December 2014
20:00
Liverpool v Swansea
Thursday, 01 January 2015
12:45
Stoke v Man Utd  
15:00
A Villa v C Palace  
Hull City v Everton  
Liverpool v Leicester  
Man City v S'land  
Newcastle v Burnley  
QPR v Swansea  
So'ton v Arsenal  
West Ham v W Brom  

Footer 365

Sky sources: Alan Irvine will be in charge for West Brom's trip to West Ham on New Year's Day

A senior West Brom source has told Sky Sports News HQ that Alan Irvine will be in charge for the game against West Ham.

Transfer news: Fernando Torres heads back to Atletico Madrid on loan until end of next season

Fernando Torres is returning to Atletico Madrid on loan until the end of the 2015-16 season.

Simon Mignolet: I'll take positives from losing Liverpool spot and come back stronger

Simon Mignolet says a recent spell out of the Liverpool side could end up having a positive effect on his career.

Mail Box

Van Gaal's Half-Term Report Card...

One Man United fan isn't happy with the rate the team is progressing under Louis van Gaal, while the mailbox also wishes Liverpool fans a Merry Mid-Table Christmas...

Hang On, Rafa's Success Is No Fluke...

The afternoon mailbox kicks the morning mailbox's arse after claims that Rafa Benitez has fluked his success. Plus, big talk about Liverpool's progress and lots more...

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