Premier League preview: Newcastle United welcome Stoke City
Last Updated: 01/01/14 3:20pm
Alan Pardew: His Newcastle side host Stoke on Boxing Day
Newcastle United welcome Stoke City to St James' Park, with both sides looking to extend their unbeaten runs.
The hosts have lost just once in their last eight, an impressive run of form which sees them in firmly in contention for a European spot as they currently occupy sixth place.
Alan Pardew's side come into the game on the back of a 3-0 away win at Crystal Palace and they have not lost any of their last five league games in front of a home crowd.
Stoke have enjoyed a recent change in fortunes and their 2-1 win at home to Aston Villa saw them extend their unbeaten run to four games in the league, climbing up to 10th the process.
However, Mark Hughes' side are without a league win away from home since they beat West Ham 1-0 back in August.
Stoke have suffered defeat in their last two visits to Newcastle, but Newcastle have lost six of their last seven Premier League games played on Boxing Day.
PAUL MERSON'S PREDICTIONS:
Newcastle will win this. About seven weeks ago people were talking about them being in a relegation battle - and I was probably one of them - but they are flying along now and the game that probably changed things was the Tottenham one.
They could have lost by at least six goals in that match but won it and haven't looked back. If they get all their players fit, they are a really good team.
PAUL PREDICTS: 2-0
Alan Pardew will be without Cheick Tiote after the midfielder picked up his fifth yellow card of the season in the 3-0 win at Crystal Palace.
Having come off the bench to find the net at Selhurst Park, Hatem Ben Arfa could return to the starting line-up in Tiote's absence.
Winger Jonas Gutierrez is nursing a calf problem picked up in training and is a doubt but otherwise, the Newcastle boss has no new concerns with Ryan Taylor his only long-term absentee due to an anterior cruciate ligament injury.
Stoke midfielder Charlie Adam starred off the bench in the 2-1 win over Aston Villa, scoring the opening goal, and Mark Hughes may be prompted into rewarding him with a start.
Hughes also has Stephen Ireland available for selection once again in midfield after he was forced to sit out against his parent club.
Defender Robert Huth is a definite absentee and he will miss all of the Christmas fixtures as he recovers from a knee operation.
Barclays Premier League
Thu 26th Dec
Hull City2 - 3Man Utd
A Villa0 - 1C Palace
Cardiff0 - 3Southampton
Chelsea1 - 0Swansea
Everton0 - 1Sunderland
Newcastle5 - 1Stoke City
Norwich1 - 2Fulham
Tottenham1 - 1West Brom
West Ham1 - 3Arsenal
Man City2 - 1Liverpool
Barclays Premier League
|13||Queens Park Rangers||0||0|
|19||West Bromwich Albion||0||0|
|20||West Ham United||0||0|
Newcastle v Stoke
The FA has confirmed that Stoke manager Mark Hughes has been charged with improper conduct.
Alan Pardew says his side were very clinical after Stoke had two players sent off in the first half.
Tony Cottee said Glenn Whelan's sending-off changed the game between Newcastle and Stoke, where Newcastle went on to win 5-1.