Newcastle V Hull at St James' Park : Match Preview

20 September 2013 10:12
Newcastle V Hull - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.

Taylor ruled out of Hull clash

Newcastle will be without central defender Steven Taylor for Saturday's Barclays Premier League clash with Hull.

Taylor, who returned to the bench after a three-match ban for last weekend's 2-1 victory at Aston Villa, has damaged a hamstring in training and could miss the next three games.

Striker Shola Ameobi is also out with a knock picked up on international duty with Nigeria, while midfielder Jonas Gutierrez continues to work his way back from a hamstring problem.

Boss Alan Pardew is refusing to get carried away by his team's encouraging start to the season.

The Magpies embarked upon the new campaign with a demoralising 4-0 defeat at Manchester City and after a difficult summer transfer window, some commentators were less than optimistic about their prospects.

However, successive victories over Fulham and Villa, have dispelled some of the clouds which were hanging over St James' Park and sparked more promising forecasts.

But having seen his side touted both as relegation candidates and top-five hopefuls in the space of a few weeks, Pardew is remaining firmly grounded.

He said: "For us Premier League managers, it's about trying to keep everybody's feet firmly planted on the ground in reality, because some of the stuff that's said is just complete fantasy.

"I never actually thought we were in as bad a situation as some people were suggesting in the media and even our own fans.

"But as I have said all along, it's about results, it's results that speak more than anything you can say.

"We have got two wins and we have got to back them up now with a home performance."

Hull will be forced into changes with two of their ever-present players missing.

Captain Robert Koren has broken a bone in his right foot and faces up to eight weeks out and left-back Maynor Figueroa has been granted compassionate leave due to a family problem.

Stephen Quinn and George Boyd are eyeing Koren's spot in midfield, Liam Rosenior is expected to replace Figueroa in the absence of Paul McShane (hamstring) and striker Yannick Sagbo is back from suspension.

A trip to Tyneside always represents a bittersweet affair for manager Steve Bruce, who struggles to hide his love of both the club and the area but has also been cast as something of a pantomime villain due to his spell as Sunderland manager.

"I'm a Geordie at the end of the day but they won't forget where I managed once upon a time," he said.

"It's always nice to go back even if I get a bit of stick, it's the team I followed as a boy and it's good to go home and play against them.

"When they get a head of steam up it's a passionate place to play football.

"I just hope it's better than last time I went there and got beaten 5-1 (with Sunderland in 2010). I remember that vividly and hopefully it's a better time for me."

Source: PA