Preview: Newcastle United vs. Metalist Kharkiv

Preview: Newcastle United vs. Metalist Kharkiv
© PA Photos
Sports Mole previews the first leg of the Europa League round of 32 clash between Newcastle United and Metalist Kharkiv on Thursday.

Newcastle United will attempt to gain a first-leg advantage when they welcome Ukrainian outfit Metalist Kharkiv in the Europa League round of 32 on Thursday.

The Magpies have struggled to live up to their standards from the previous Premier League season, but they have won two of their last three matches to move into 16th position in the table, four points above the relegation zone.

Meanwhile, Metalist have been fairly solid in their domestic campaign, losing just four of their 18 matches to sit in fourth position. However, they are an incredible 15 points behind leaders Shakhtar Donetsk, who have lost just once this season.

The home side made it to this stage of the competition after overcoming a group that contained Maritimo, Bordeaux and Club Brugge, while Metalist advanced from Group K, which also included Bayer Leverkusen, Rapid Vienna and Rosenborg.

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew is expected to ring the chances, with Cheick Tiote and Shola Ameobi both coming into the team. French import Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa should also start in the middle of their defence.

The away side have an almost fully-fit squad to choose from ahead of the match, with Cleiton Xavier expected to play in a withdrawn role behind Willian. Fellow Brazilian Marlos should also start in midfield.

Recent form:

Newcastle: DLWWL
Metalist: WWWLD

Possible lineups:

Newcastle: Krul; Santon, Yanga-Mbiwa, Perch, Williamson; Marveaux, Tiote, Anita, Jonas; Sh Ameobi, Gouffran

Metalist: Horyainov; Gueye, Torsiglieri, Barvinko, Berezovchuk; Xavier, Sosa, Torres, Marlos; Willian, Cristaldo

Sports Mole says: 3-1

Toon Army boss Alan Pardew on the touchline before the game with Reading on January 19, 2013
Read Next:
Pardew excited by "mouthwatering" Newcastle
You May Like
Recomended from Sports Mole

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

1Manchester CityMan City23202167175062
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd23155348163250
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
8Leicester CityLeicester238783432231
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham2367102941-1225
12Crystal Palace2367102133-1225
14Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2366111939-2024
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2365122131-1023
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2358101729-1223
18Stoke CityStoke2355132350-2720
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom23310101830-1219
20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
Login, I already have my ad-free pass
Log in with Facebook to customise Sports Mole
Buy ad-free access (show me the options)
Buy monthly ad-free access for £1.20/month
Buy yearly ad-free access for £12 (2 months free)
Settings - Logout - Manage your account
Settings - Logout - Manage your account