Gary Cahill and Tyrick Mitchell could return to the starting line-up later this afternoon as Crystal Palace take on Newcastle at St James’ Park.
While most of the attention of the general footballing public will likely be on Old Trafford on Tuesday as Southampton travel to Manchester United, Palace could create some space between themselves and the chasing pack at the bottom of the table, depending on the result on Tyneside.
However, in order to do that, they will have to pick up all three points against a team who have caused Roy Hodgson’s side problems in the past. Palace suffered a 2-0 defeat to Newcastle at Selhurst Park back in November.
With that in mind, here’s Football FanCast’s predicted line-up for today’s trip to Newcastle.
The Eagles have started the new year with a renewed sense of optimism after bringing in a new striker in the form of Jean-Philippe Mateta.
Nevertheless, the Palace boss will probably play it safe as it’s unlikely he is taking anything for granted, meaning Michy Batshuayi will be back upfront after his solid shift against Wolves and he will play alongside the in-form Wilfried Zaha.
To the left of the Belgian in attack will be Eberechi Eze, who scored the only goal of the game against Wolves, while Andros Townsend will most likely replace Jordan Ayew on the right flank.
In defence, Tyrick Mitchell could come in for Patrick van Aanholt, the latter being heavily linked with the Selhurst Park exit on deadline day, with Gary Cahill back as one of two centre-back options with Cheikhou Kouyate.
Elsewhere, Vicente Guaita is a mainstay in Hodgson’s side, which leaves Jack Butland still waiting for his Premier League debut for the club.
Meanwhile, Jairo Riedewald will be the only other change in midfield, with James McCarthy dropping to the bench as a result.
AND in other news, Vicente Guaita’s new contract could be bad news for Jack Butland…