Good afternoon and welcome to Sports Mole
's live text coverage of today's Premier League encounter between Swansea City
and Newcastle United
at the Liberty Stadium. There's plenty riding on this game for both teams, though there will be lots of eyes on the visitors and manager Alan Pardew
. Team news to follow shortly.
SWANSEA: Fabianski; Richards, Fernandez, Williams, Taylor; Ki, Shelvey; Sigurdsson, Dyer, Routledge; Bony
SWANSEA SUBS: Tremmel, Bartley, Shephard, Carroll, Emnes, Montero, Gomis
Swansea boss Garry Monk has made two changes to his starting lineup following last weekend's goalless draw with Sunderland. Jazz Richards replaces the suspended Angel Rangel in defence, while Wilfried Bony
returns to the side after serving a one-match ban. Marvin Emnes and Bafetimbi Gomis are among the substitutes.
NEWCASTLE: Krul; Janmaat, Coloccini, Williamson, Dummett; Colback, Tiote, Sissoko; Obertan, Cisse, Gouffran
NEWCASTLE SUBS: Elliot, Haidara, Anita, Ameobi, Cabella, Riviere, Perez
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew
has also made two changes to his XI on the back of Monday's 1-0 defeat to Stoke City. Gabriel Obertan and Papiss Cisse
both start, with Remy Cabella and Emmanuel Riviere dropping to the bench.
Could this be the latest Newcastle team that Alan Pardew picks? Speculation over his future at the club has reached fever pitch following the team's poor start to the season. To remind you, Newcastle come into today's match in 19th place in the table with no wins from their opening six games of the campaign. The Magpies have taken just three points in that time.
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew: "There's not much to say. We need to get a win. No matter what I say to some reasonable people it means nothing, we need to win. I spoke to the chief executive and we discussed ways of trying to help the team and getting the team playing to its capacity.
"We haven't got the experience of the side that got relegated, before my time, and it's important we start gathering points quickly to make sure we are fighting at the right end of the table."
While Newcastle are enduring a woeful start to the season, there's plenty of optimism around Swansea thanks to three wins from their first six matches. The Swans are currently in fifth place in the standings, but they will climb up into the top four if they avoid defeat this afternoon. There have been a couple of surprise packages in the Premier League this season and Swansea are certainly one of them.
Swansea boss Garry Monk: "I know what the players can do and we've been working very hard putting stuff into place. Where we are now is at a good level but we can show more. As a whole over all the games we can be better and that's what we're all striving for."
Got a spare couple of minutes before kickoff? Why not check out our video preview of today's match below:
With Papiss Cisse and Gabriel Obertan being brought in to the Newcastle side this afternoon, Alan Pardew will be hoping that the pair can make an impact. Cisse certainly did that against Hull a couple of weeks ago, coming off the bench to score twice and salvage his side a point in a 2-2 draw. As for the dropped duo of Cabella and Riviere, they've done little to impress during the first few weeks of the season.
HEAD TO HEAD: Newcastle boast the better record when it comes to past meetings between these teams, winning 19 games compared to 12 for Swansea. Meanwhile, there have been a total of four draws since they first played each other back in 1934.
Despite Newcastle's overall dominance in this fixture, it's Swansea who have been the better side in recent years. The Swans have won their last four matches against the Magpies, including an emphatic 3-0 victory in this fixture last season. Newcastle's last triumph came back in April 2012.
With plenty of criticism being heaped on Alan Pardew at the moment, he's had one supporter in the last few days in the form of former Newcastle midfielder Yohan Cabaye. The Frenchman recently told The Telegraph
: "The manager is in trouble now, so I'm sad for him. Even when I was there, the manager showed us the way to play. It is the players who have to work harder.
"If he texts me and wants to meet me in Paris, then it would be with pleasure. He gave me everything when I arrived three years ago, so for me he is a good manager and he will stay the same in my mind.
"I like him, because he gave me confidence. He was really close to the players, talking to them a lot and in a positive way. He helped us in our minds to play well. He put trust in all of us."
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While the majority of focus has been on Alan Pardew this week, it's easy to forget that Swansea have some good news in the form of Jonjo Shelvey being called up to the England squad for their upcoming Euro 2016 qualifiers. The combative midfielder is sure to have a spring in his step this afternoon.
Garry Monk led the praise for Shelvey, saying in his press conference earlier this week: "It's excellent news for both the player and the club. We have a lot of international players in the squad, but we have talked a lot about England in recent weeks and the last couple of seasons.
"We've worked very hard with Jonjo, both in terms of his contribution on and off the pitch. He has made big improvements and this will give him a massive boost going forward."
Around 10 minutes to go until kickoff at the Liberty Stadium and the ground is starting to fill up nicely. That includes lots of fans in the black and white of Newcastle, who always provide excellent support for their side. That said, there are still a few banners and signs calling for Alan Pardew's head.
The players are starting to emerge in the tunnel now as we edge closer towards kickoff. Despite the pressure on their manager, the Newcastle players are looking relatively relaxed. Could this really be Pardew's last game in charge? Another defeat could well mean curtains for the 53-year-old. A draw may just satisfy owner Mike Ashley, while a win would buy the manager some valuable time.
KICKOFF! The teams are out, the pre-match handshakes have been done, and it will be Swansea to get us underway at the Liberty Stadium. Here we go!
It's been an even opening to the match, though Swansea have enjoyed a bit more of the ball during the opening few minutes. The hosts are looking a bit more adventurous going forward, while Newcastle are trying to remain compact and organised.
Shelvey gives us a glimpse of what he's capable of by attempting a cross-field pass towards Dyer, but the midfielder gets a little bit too much on it and the ball goes out of play. Newcastle can't allow Swansea's central players to have too much time on the ball this afternoon because they have lots of quality in those areas.
Something of a half-chance for the visitors there as a long ball into the Swansea box causes all sorts of confusion before the home side clears. Newcastle haven't shown much attacking intent so far, it has to be said. It looks as if they are going to soak up any pressure and try to pick Swansea off.
It's all very patient from Swansea right now as they pass and probe. The Newcastle players aren't doing much in the way of closing them down, but their positioning means that the home side just can't find a way through.
His team has done little to drool over so far, but Alan Pardew could well be the happier of the two manager following the opening 15 minutes of this match. The Magpies are looking organised from a defensive point of view, frustrating their opponents. All they need to do now look a bit sharper at the other end of the pitch.
CHANCE! Newcastle come close to taking the lead as Obertan takes aim from the edge of the box, but he can only drag his shot narrowly wide of the post.
GOAL! SWANSEA 1-0 NEWCASTLE (BONY)
Newcastle are made to pay almost instantly for that missed chance from Obertan as Wilfried Bony slots the ball past Tim Krul to give the hosts the lead. The Ivorian was picked out brilliantly by Sigurdsson on the edge of the box before taking a touch and firing low into the bottom corner.
The visitors haven't shown much in the way of fight since going behind. In all honesty they look a bit lost. Meanwhile, Swansea have their tails up now. The Liberty Stadium was strangely quiet during the opening few minutes of the match, but the home fans are in fine voice now.
This is looking all too familiar for Alan Pardew at the moment. His players are not giving anywhere near enough effort out there. There afternoon so far is summed up by Colback's attempted through ball that is easily cut out by Williams. There's no bite in the final third for Newcastle.
"You're getting sacked in the morning" sing the Swansea fans to Alan Pardew. They might just be right. Swansea aren't exactly dominating this match, but Newcastle are allowing them to have more joy than they should be. Sigurdsson in particular is pulling one or two of the strings for the hosts from his trademark position in the hole.
Shelvey gives Newcastle something to think about when he receives the ball on the edge of the penalty area, only to send a shot high and wide. That opportunity came about through some great work off the ball from Swansea. They chased Newcastle about and eventually won possession before setting up Shelvey.
Ten minutes of normal time remaining in this first half and it's difficult to see where a Newcastle equaliser is going to come from. Swansea think they should be 2-0 up when Ki heads wide from close range following a free kick from the right, but the linesman's flag is up for offside.
SAVE! What a goal that would have been for Bony, but Krul is there to make a superb save. Dyer does well down the right, creating himself some space before whipping a ball into the box. Bony is there to meet it on the volley, only for Newcastle's goalkeeper to keep it out of the bottom corner.
Swansea are starting to get in behind Newcastle a bit more now as we enter the final five minutes of the first half. One such opening sees Shelvey bomb down the right and put an inviting cross into the heart of the Newcastle penalty area. However, Bony can't reach it.
GOAL! SWANSEA 1-1 NEWCASTLE (CISSE)
They've been poor in this first half, but Newcastle are level thanks to an opportunistic goal from Papiss Cisse! Obertan does well on the right, putting in a low cross towards the near post where Cisse is waiting to flick beyond Fabianksi. That is a great finish from the Senegal striker because he had nothing to work with there.
Just the one minute of added time at the end of the half...
HALF TIME: SWANSEA 1-1 NEWCASTLE
The half-time whistle is blown by referee Lee Mason to bring an end to a bizarre opening 45 minutes at the Liberty Stadium. Swansea took a deserved lead through Wilfried Bony on 17 minutes before Newcastle equalised against the run of play late on thanks to Papiss Cisse's clever strike.
Newcastle have been very poor so far, but they find themselves all square at the break. Swansea will be annoyed that they haven't converted one or two of their other chances, while Newcastle will be counting themselves lucky to still be in this match.
Despite Swansea's dominance so far, this game remains finely-poised. Newcastle will feel that they have a chance of coming away from South Wales with the three points if they stay tight defensively and catch their opponents on the break. Meanwhile, you can imagine Garry Monk is telling his players to keep doing what they're doing.
SECOND HALF UNDERWAY! The players are back out and it will be Newcastle to kick us off for the second half. No changes from either manager at the break.
Little to report on from the opening few minutes of the second, but it's Swansea who are seeing the majority of the ball. Cisse gets a talking to from referee Lee Mason after going in on Dyer with what can only be described as a striker's challenge.
GOAL! SWANSEA 2-1 NEWCASTLE (ROUTLEDGE)
Swansea regain the lead and it's former Newcastle winger Wayne Routledge
who gets the goal! Sigurdsson is again involved, threading the ball through to Routledge on the edge of the box, and he makes no mistake thanks to a delightful flick over Krul and into the net.
They've already fought back from a goal down this afternoon, but can Newcastle do it again? Or are Swansea going to learn from their lesson and keep the Magpies at bay? Newcastle are showing a bit more fight since going behind, though they've done little all afternoon in terms of worrying their opponents.
A word on Swansea's second goal: Sissoko was dispossessed by Sigurdsson in the build-up when he really should have shown more strength and kept hold of the ball. The midfielder was bustled off the ball far too easily.
SUBSTITUTION: Newcastle make their first change of the afternoon as Sammy Ameobi replaces Yoan Gouffran, who has been very ineffective for the Magpies today.
The Swansea fans will be delighted with what they're seeing from their side at the minute. The hosts are doing an excellent job in closing Newcastle down and winning the ball back quickly. When they get possession they're using it well with some neat passing and persistent movement.
YELLOW CARD! Newcastle skipper Fabricio Coloccini goes into the book for blocking off Dyer when the Swansea winger was looking to steal a march on him. No complaints for that one.
CHANCE! Swansea come close to making it 3-1 as Bony and Sigurdsson combine before the former fires over from a tight angle. That would have been a very clever goal from the home side's perspective. At the other end of the pitch Newcastle are struggling to create anything at all.
SUBSTITUTION: Another swap for Newcastle sees Emmanuel Riviere replace Jack Colback. The striker has failed to light up the Premier League since his summer move from Monaco, though a goal now would make him an instant hero on Tyneside.
Newcastle win a free kick in a decent position out on the right that Ameobi whips into the box, but Bony is there at the front post to clear. The delivery really needed to be better there.
SAVE! Another fine save from Krul keeps Newcastle in this match! Dyer's cross is met by Bony in the middle of the box, only for the striker's first-time strike to be pushed away by the Newcastle goalkeeper. Good play all round there.
YELLOW CARD! Swansea midfielder Jonjo Shelvey goes into the book for a clumsy challenge on Obertan, just as Newcastle were looking to break.
GOAL! SWANSEA 2-2 NEWCASTLE (CISSE)
Newcastle and Cisse have done it again! They've been toothless in this second half, but they're level once more. Ameobi does well down the right, putting a devilish cross into the heart of the Swansea box that Cisse flicks past Fabianski. Incredible. Will we see a winner in the final 15 minutes?
A bit of a worry for Newcastle there as Tiote goes down clutching his leg, but it looks as if the midfielder will be okay to continue. This game really could go either way now.
CHANCE! Cisse comes within inches of giving Newcastle the lead! Riviere's initial shot is deflected into the path of his teammate. However, Cisse loses his balance and shoots over the crossbar at the back post. A bit more composure there and the Magpies could have found themselves 3-2 in front.
Both teams are struggling to keep hold of the ball as we head towards the final five minutes of this match. Sigurdsson is gifted the ball on the edge of the box before trying to run at the Newcastle defence. It looks as if he might wriggle his way through, but Williamson stops him in his tracks.
SUBSTITUTIONS: Newcastle's final change sees Ayoze Perez replace two-goal hero Papiss Cisse. Meanwhile, Swansea make two changes as Marvin Emnes and Jefferson Montero enter the action in place of Gylfi Sigurdsson and Nathan Dyer.
CHANCE! Emnes is given the opportunity to make an instant impact when his is set free by Bony, but the forward takes the ball away from goal before seeing his shot kept out by Krul. Following that, Daryl Janmaat is cautioned for a foul.
There will be a minimum of FOUR MINUTES added time at the end of this game. Will we see a winning goal?
Newcastle are doing all of the pushing at the moment as they go in search of a winner. Janmaat tries his luck with a long-range effort that Fabianski does well to hold. Plenty of the Swansea players had their hearts in their mouths there because that was a decent drive.
FULL TIME: SWANSEA 2-2 NEWCASTLE
Referee Lee Mason blows the full-time whistle, bringing the curtain down on a fascinating 90 minutes of football at the Liberty Stadium. Newcastle are still without a win this season, but they came from behind twice to earn a 2-2 draw with Swansea.
That's all from our live text coverage of this afternoon's match, but don't forget that you can keep up to date with the reaction from both camps right here on Sports Mole. Thanks for your company, we hope to see you soon. Goodbye!