Premier League club Newcastle United travel to France to play Ligue 1 club Bordeaux in the final round of group stage matches for the UEFA Europa League. The Magpies and their hosts for this game have already qualified for the knock-out stages but final places in Group D are still to be decided. Alan Pardew's men are second with nine points and trail the French by one point.
Where to Watch
Kick-off is set for 6 pm GMT. Live coverage will be available on ESPN UK and ESPN UK HD.
Bordeaux qualified for the knock-out stages with an away win against Belgian side Club Brugge in the last round of matches and with home advantage and a points lead over Newcastle going into this game, will be favourites to win Group D.
The French were on an excellent run of form until mid-November, winning five games on the trot; the run included an important 1-0 home win in the league, over second-placed Olympique Marseille. However, since then they have lost one and drawn one, with the defeat coming at the home of defending champions Montpellier. On the whole, though, Bordeaux's domestic form has been patchy. Francis Gillot's side are sixth in Ligue 1, with 25 points from 15 games.
Meanwhile, Newcastle finally broke their winless streak on Monday night, clinching a 3-0 home win against 10-man Wigan Athletic. The Magpies had gone seven games without win until that moment and looked in danger of slipping into a relegation fight with the likes of Aston Villa and the Latics. As things stand, the win gives Pardew a sliver of breathing space; the club moves to 17 points with Villa and Wigan on 14 and Sunderland on 13. The Monday night win was the first time the club managed to score thrice this season in the league.
Like Bordeaux, this game is a dead rubber for Newcastle. They really don't need to win this. But Pardew will not allow his men to relax and the players themselves should be keen on building on the confidence from their last win. The club's December and holiday calendar is a daunting one, with games against English champions Manchester City, league leaders Manchester United and Arsenal before the New Year.
The reverse fixture, at St James' Park, ended in 3-0 win for Newcastle, with Papiss Cisse and Shola Ameobi adding to Henrique's own goal.
- Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): D L W W W
- Last Result: Bordeaux 2 - 2 Sochaux
- Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): W L L D L
- Last Result: Newcastle United 3 - 0 Wigan Athletic
Bordeaux have a near full-strength squad for this match but expect Gillot (indeed both managers) to rest several key players for this game... particularly with ground to make up in the French league. The only injury concern for the hosts will probably be Abdou Traore (thigh) while France U21 Henri Saivet could return in time to make a start.
Probable Line-Up: Carasso; Mariano, Sane, Planus, Tremoulinas; Maurice-Belay, Sertic, N'Guemo, Plasil; Jussie, Gouffran
Newcastle have a few more injury concerns than their hosts although, like Gillot, Pardew is unlikely to trouble too many senior players for this game. The visitors are without French midfielders Yohan Cabaye (groin) and Hatem Ben Arfa (hamstring) and also without Steven Taylor (hamstring), Dan Gosling (knee), Gabriel Obertan (toe) and Ryan Taylor (knee).
Probable Line-Up: Harper; Simpson, Coloccini, Williamson, Ferguson; Bigirimana, Anita; Marveaux, Sa Ameobi, Sh Ameobi; Cisse