Preview: Metalist Kharkiv vs. Newcastle United

Magpies boss Alan Pardew wrapped up warm on December 10, 2012
© PA Photos
Sports Mole previews the second leg of the Europa League clash between Metalist and Newcastle following a goalless first leg.

It's all square heading into the second leg of the round-of-32 tie between Metalist Kharkiv and Newcastle United in the Europa League, leaving both sides with an equal chance of progressing.

The Magpies failed to find the back of the net in a goalless draw at St James' Park last week for the first leg, but they have the disadvantage of travelling to Ukraine for the crucial decider.

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has admitted that he is having a selection headache for the game due to the Premier League clash against Southampton just three days later.

The North-East outfit are currently lingering above the bottom three of the league table, just four points clear of relegation, which suggests that Pardew could refrain from fielding a full-strength side on Thursday.

Moussa Sissoko could be dropped from the lineup with Southampton's game in mind, while Sylvain Marveaux could be installed in midfield with Pappiss Cisse up front.

Meanwhile, Jonatan Cristaldo is expected to lead the line for the home side for the second-leg encounter.

Recent form

Metalist: DLWWW

Newcastle: DLWWL

Possible starting lineups

Metalist: Goryainov; Villagra, Gueye, Torsiglieri, Fininho; Edmar, Torres; Marlos, Cleiton Xavier, Sosa; Cristaldo

Newcastle: Krul; Yanga-Mbiwa, S Taylor, Coloccini, Haidara; Tiote, Cabaye; Obertan, Marveaux, Gutierrez; Cisse

Sports Mole says: 0-1

Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa
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