Date:Tuesday January 1 2013
Sports Direct Arena
January 2, 2013
Everton's first fixture of 2013 sees them travel to the North East to take on Newcastle United at Sports Direct Arena on Wednesday night. Both sides suffered defeats on the weekend with a gallant, but depleted Everton side going down 2-1 to Chelsea, their first home loss of the season, meanwhile Newcastle shipped 7 goals to Arsenal at the Emirates. For Everton, a win is essential, especially since they lost 2-1 to Chelsea, that loss meant they slipped out of the top 4 into 6th, 3pts behind 4th placed Spurs. For Newcastle, they have found the season tough after an impressive 2011/12 season, a small squad coupled with the demands of Europa sees them languishing in 15th, and with only 3pts separating themselves and 18th placed Southampton a win and the 3pts is vital.
Everton left back Leighton Baines reflected on a successful 2012 and hopefully repeating the form in 2013 saying
"It`s been a great year, We`ve done really well and the disappointing thing is that we had the chances [against Chelsea]. Even at the death there were a couple of chances to save a point which would have kept us in there. We will pick ourselves up, there is a quick turnaround and we will go to Newcastle and try to win there. If we can have a second half of the season like we have in the past few years I think everyone would be happy with that. The goal is to emulate what we have done in recent seasons and if we do we won`t be too far off where we want to be.'
Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew has cursed the injuries that have plagued his squad saying
'Players coming back is the most important thing because we have some fantastic players who are not contributing at the minute. I think both Yohan and Steven Taylor have a great chance for Norwich, Our whole first-choice midfield, with the exception of Cheick (Tioté), is sitting in the treatment room. Once they come back, and we`re a little bit more positive today on the training ground - Cabaye was running around and Taylor was running around - then that will give everyone a lift."
The big news surrounding Newcastle over the past few days has been the rumours around the departure of main man Demba Ba. In good news, Ba is expected to feature against Everton. Newcastle are also about to sign French right back Mathieu Debuchy, however, he will not feature against Everton. The injury list is long for Newcastle with the likes of Simpson (toe), Ben Arfa and Steven Taylor (hamstring), Cabaye (groin), Anita and Gosling (ankle), Gutierrez, Ryan Taylor and Vuckic (all knee) all missing the match against Everton.
Possible Starting XI: Krul, Perch, Williamson, Coloccini, Santon, Obertan, Tiote, Bigirimana, Cisse, Ba, Marveaux
Despite his days on the Toon seemingly numbered, Demba Ba will still be the major threat for Newcastle. Scoring goals for fun at the moment, the big Senegalese target man will undoubtedly look to cause the Everton defenders trouble in the same manner he did at Goodison Park where he bagged a double. The Everton centre backs have a tough job on their hands, but if they can keep him quiet, then the chances of Everton winning are very high
Everton's small squad is being stretched to the max during the festive season. Moyes revealed midfielder Darron Gibson is set to miss a month with a thigh injury, he joins Mirallas (hamstring), Hibbert (calf) and Neville (knee) in the treatment room. Right back Seamus Coleman, who signed a new 5 and a half year deal this week, has an outside chance of returning. The big boost for Everton will be the return of the influential Belgian Marouane Fellaini after he completed his 3 match ban for his headbutt against Stoke.
Possible Starting XI: Howard, Baines, Jagielka, Distin, Coleman, Osman, Fellaini, Pienaar, Naismith, Anichebe, Jelavic
Despite Everton winning 2 of the 3 games Fellaini missed during his suspension, the big Belgian is an integral part of the Everton side and is a welcomed addition to the side given the injury list. With Newcastle shipping goals at will, Fellaini will be looking to take advantage of that and add to his impressive tally of 8 goals this season. Will play a major role in deciding which team ends up with the 3pts, if he can get on top of the struggling Newcastle defence, then hopefully Everton will be celebrating the New Year with 3pts.
1. Everton do not have a good track record at St James' Park. Everton have only won once in the past 10 attempts.
2. Everton have scored in the last 17 league matches, on the contrary they haven't kept a clean sheet in the last 15 matches.
3. Newcastle have shipped 11 goals in the last 2 matches
4. Everton have hit the woodwork 17 times, the most in the league
5. Everton amassed 68pts in 2012, which was the 3rd highest behind the two Manchester sides, and their highest tally in a calendar year since the 1980's.
Despite the loss to Chelsea, many Everton fans, including myself were pleased with the performance, despite the lengthy injury list, Everton more than matched Chelsea and were incredibly unlucky to lose the match. Hopefully, the result does not demoralise the side and they can start 2013 in a good fashion. Hopefully Everton can take advantage on the lengthy injury list of Newcastle, coupled with the return of Fellaini can get the 3pts they need to keep in hunt for 4th. As for a prediction, sitting on the fence and saying 1-1 with Ba and Fellaini on the scoresheet. COYB!! LETS START 2013 WITH A WIN, NEED THE 3PTS LADS!!!!!
Date:Tuesday January 1 2013
Martinez eyes Alcaraz as first Everton signing? (Thursday June 13 2013)
Martinez keen to tie up Baines (Thursday June 13 2013)
Martinez the man at Everton (Wednesday June 5 2013)
VIDEO: Everton Agree Compensation For Martinez (Tuesday June 4 2013)
D-Day looms for Everton (Sunday June 2 2013)
Martinez to hold talks with Everton (Tuesday May 28 2013)
Two horse race for the Everton job? (Sunday May 26 2013)
Everton heading to America (Sunday May 26 2013)
Redknapp receives backing for Everton role (Friday May 24 2013)
Martinez back in as favourite (Thursday May 23 2013)
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