Facts and figures for Saturday's clash with the Magpies (ko 5.30pm)
A JOURNEY to the North East awaits Albion this weekend, and as always with Steve Clarke's Baggies side, the match promises to be an entertaining clash. Here, WhoScored.com crunches the numbers ahead of the game.
Newcastle and Albion tend to play out some of the Barclays Premier League's most memorable encounters, as two good, attack-minded teams come together and look, quite simply, to score more goals than their opponents rather than sit back and grind out a narrow win.
In fact, there has not been a single clean sheet on either side in the Baggies’ last 11 meetings with the Magpies, with a total of 44 goals netted; an astonishing average of four goals per game.
What is more, Albion have only failed to score in one of their ten most recent outings - the goalless draw at Stoke - while Newcastle have netted in each of their last ten despite the fact their star striker from last season, Papiss Cisse is going through a dry patch in terms of goals.
The Senegal international has played a colossal 1,080 minutes (18 hours) of Barclays Premier League action since scoring against Fulham back in April.
On contrasting form, Shane Long has netted three times in his last two matches, picking up the WhoScored man of the match award in each game, and having twice before bagged against Newcastle - once for Reading and once for the Baggies - he could be the one to watch yet again this weekend.
Despite the long journey north, Albion travel exceptionally well when playing at St James' Park.
They have lost only one of their last four trips there, scoring eight goals in the three they avoided defeat in.
Most recent of those was the impressive 3-2 win in December 2011, when Gareth McAuley was among the goals –again - and Chris Brunt was among the assists - again.
Having lost only one of the last nine league matches, there is no reason the Baggies cannot produce a repeat performance and result this weekend.
Given the number of goals that have been scored in recent clashes between the sides, stopper Boaz Myhill could once again be key.
The Wales international has been in fine form having been brought into the team to deputise for the injured Ben Foster, averaging 3.2 saves per game, a rate better than ten of the 17 goalkeepers to have appeared at least ten times in England’s top-flight this season.
Moreover, Myhill has been stopping shots on target he has been tested with at an impressive success rate of 71.1%. To put this into context, the likes of David de Gea (70%), Tim Krul (69.5%), Tim Howard (69.0%), Joe Hart (65.5%) and Michel Vorm (58.5%) among many others all fare worse.
With Myhill in form between the sticks, and Albion's strikeforce firing in the goals at quite a rate, the late kick off on Saturday is set to be an entertaining - and could well be a successful - one for the Baggies.
*WhoScored.com is a unique website and one of the fastest growing in the sports industry, specialising in the in-depth analysis of detailed football data. Provided with unique stats, they compile and create comprehensive analysis on the major European divisions, including live match stats and player ratings. Follow @WhoScored and their editor-in-chief @alitweedale on Twitter.
All-time results record (League, FA Cup and League Cup)
In the 14 Barclays Premier League ties between the two sides 49 goals have been scored - an average of 3.5 per game - with neither club recording a clean sheet in the past ten meetings in all competitions.
Saturday will mark the 115th league meeting between the two teams with Newcastle recording 42 wins, to Albion’s 40, with 32 draws.
Steve Clarke started his coaching career as Ruud Gullit’s assistant manager at Newcastle – before going on to work in Sir Bobby Robson’s backroom staff.
Papiss Cisse has scored three goals in three league games against Albion.
Victor Anichebe has scored more Barclays Premier League goals against Newcastle than any other team (4).
The Magpies have lost just one of their last six league fixtures (W3 D2 L1).
Albion have drawn their last two games 2-2 - with Liverpool the only Premier League side to draw three successive games 2-2 back in September 2002.
Last time out
HOME: Barclays Premier League, Saturday, April 20, 2013 - Albion 1 (Jones 64) Newcastle 1 (Gouffran 8)
AWAY: Barclays Premier League, Sunday, October 28, 2012 - Newcastle 2 (Ba 35, Cisse 90) Albion 1 (Lukaku 55)
Form guide (last six league matches)
Last league match line-ups
Albion (v Villa - home D 2-2): Myhill; Reid, McAuley, Olsson, Popov (Anichebe 82); Mulumbu, Yacob; Amalfitano, Sessegnon (Morrison 83), Brunt; Long. Subs not used: L Daniels (gk), Berahino, Dawson, Vydra, Anelka.
Newcastle (v Norwich home W 2-1): Krul; Yanga-Mbiwa, Williamson, Coloccini (c), Santon; Sissoko, Tiote, Cabaye (Anita 67), Gouffran (Ben Arfa 83); Ameobi (Cisse 73), Remy. Subs not used: Elliot (gk), Haidara, Ameobi, Obertan.
Newcastle team news
Mathieu Debuchy is back in contention, having served a one-game ban, and Steven Taylor is fit again following a lengthy hamstring injury. Alan Pardew has confirmed Mike Williamson will start in defence.
Phil Dowd will referee Saturday's game. The Staffordshire official last oversaw the Baggies in September's 3-0 home victory over Sunderland. Dowd has dished out 49 yellow and one red card in 12 games this term.
Selected odds from Sky Bet:
Albion to win: 11/4
Newcastle to win: 1/1
Shane Long to score first: 15/2
Papiss Cisse to score first: 13/2
If you fancy a flutter with the club's official online betting partner, click here.
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