Newcastle United v/s Wigan Athletic

Alan Pardew and his stumbling Newcastle United side return home to St. James Park to face Wigan Athletic and after two consecutive away defeats to lowly Southampton and again against Stoke City, Pardew and his men will be glad to return to their home ground and play in front of their fanatic home support. Another thing that will make the Newcastle manager happy is the fact that Senegalese striker Papiss Demba Cisse is back amongst the goals after an enforced injury layoff. With both Demba Ba and Cisse getting back to their goal scoring ways that helped the club to such a high finish in the English Premier League last season, Pardew will be hoping the two Senegalese strikers can re-find their touch as they look to bring an end to their slump.

It is being believed that The Magpies are not being able to cope with their exploits in the UEFA EUROPA League every alternate week and being inexperienced of handling both Europe and the domestic competition, Pardew is finding it difficult as his players are growing increasingly fatigued, having to play two games in the span of four days. Having drawn a blank against Southampton at St. Mary’s, Newcastle took the lead against Stoke, only to concede two late goals and go down.

They are currently lying in 14th position in the league and the leading clubs have already started to carve out a lead big enough for The Magpies to catch up to if they don’t start piling up the points by Christmas period. Wigan, on the other hand, have more or less drifted into the safety zone even before the start of the busy Christmas period and it seems that with the likes of Reading, Queens Park Rangers and Southampton battling for relegation, Wigan will not be drawn into a battle for survival like last season.

Both the clubs have 14 points from 14 games and each manager will know a win will be of utmost importance against for both these sides. With Newcastle back in action in Europe in midweek, Pardew and his men will have to go all guns blazing to secure all three points from this home game knowing that another dropped point will increase the pressure on them. With an owner as trigger happy as Mike Ashley, Pardew just cannot afford to take the risk at this moment or his job will be on the line.

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