Joe Kinnear’s Newcastle United play, Wigan Athletic in the Premier League at St James’ Park on Saturday.
The Magpies lost to Fulham 2-1 at Craven Cottage last weekend, but won their previous two Premiership matches against Aston Villa and West Bromwich Albion, which brought an end to Kinnear’s winless streak at the North East club. However, Newcastle are still in the relegation zone and Kinnear will be hoping that the Toon can pick up all three points against a Wigan side just above them on virtue of goal difference.
Latics manager Steve Bruce will want his side to shake off any side effects of the 3-0 Carling Cup defeat to Arsenal’s youngsters on Tuesday and will be hoping that Wigan can build on the win against Portsmouth at Fratton Park and the 0-0 draw with Stoke City at the JJB Stadium in their last two Premier League outings. Which ended a four-game losing streak for Wigan.
Kinnear is still unable to call on Alan Smith, Mark Viduka and Ignacio Gonzalez, who all have achilles problems for the visit of Wigan. Joey Barton is likely to start in central midfield and Newcastle Player of the Month Shola Ameobi is likely to lead the attack, with Kinnear to decide between Obafemi Martins and Michael Owen as his strike-partner for this must win clash.
The Latics will be without long-term absentee Erik Edman (knee), with doubts over Premiership top-scorer Amr Zaki after his agent claimed that the Egyptian International has been playing with flu and is carrying several other knocks.
“Amr will have a full check-up on Wednesday because of several injury concerns in late,” Saied told FilGoal.
“He played with flu against Stoke and Arsenal, he is also complaining from an old calf injury. Furthermore, he received a knock to his ribs during the Arsenal match.”
Newcastle United: (from) Given, Coloccini, Taylor, N’Zogbia, Barton, Butt, Gutierrez, Enrique, Cacapa, Guthrie, Martins, Owen, Duff, Bassong, Harper, Xisco, Geremi, Beye, Ameobi, Kadar, Edgar, Tozer, LuaLua, Carroll
Wigan Athletic: (from) Kirkland, Melchiot, Bramble, Taylor, Cattermole, Jones, Palacios, Scharner, Kilbane, Heskey, Koumas, Brown, Pollitt, Zaki, Valencia, Boyce, de Ridder, Cywka, Kapo, Camara, Kupisz, Figueroa, Ashworth