Arsenal vs Newcastle – Premier League preview and team news

Victory for Arsenal against a desperately out-of-form Newcastle United will put them on the brink of yet another top four finish under Arsene Wenger.

A defeat for Everton away to Southampton on Saturday was the perfect result for the hosts, who are gradually gaining momentum once again. They had to weather an early storm at Hull City in their last outing, but once that subsided they began to look like the side that had marched to the top of the Premier League in the early months of the season, with Lukas Podolski in particularly good form.

Newcastle have manager Alan Pardew back on the touchline once again, but how much that will impact the team’s performance remains to be seen. The late defeat to Swansea City was another painful blow for a side that is apparently lacking in harmony and motivation at present. The mood among the supporters was also summed up by the mass exodus that followed Wilfried Bony’s successful spot-kick.

Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen has recovered from injury but is only likely to be on the bench, while Abou Diaby, Jack Wilshere and Theo Walcott are still out.

The visitors have left Hatem Ben Arfa for this match, a fact that was revealed publically by the Frenchman. Strikers Papiss Cisse and Luuk De Jong also miss out, but Moussa Sissoko should feature.

See what the expert tipsters at OLBG are tipping on Arsenal v Newcastle

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