Newcastle’s top scorer Demba Ba is expected to win his battle with a minor calf problem and be passed fit to play. The Magpies are again without midfielder Cheick Tiote, who serves the second game of a three-match ban.
Alan Pardew was quoted by Goal.com: “There’s a little bit more pressure at Liverpool because of the stature and the trophies that they’ve won. You have to look at Newcastle and say we haven’t won a trophy in so long. You’d have to put them, historically, much higher than us. It’s a period for Brendan and the team when they’re evolving and when they’re evolving they’re vulnerable.
“Perhaps they are at the moment but they still have some fantastic players. The England captain [Steven Gerrard] and [Luis] Suarez are two of the best players in the Premiership so we have to make sure we are very much on top of our game.”
Pardew took the Magpies to the brink of Champions League qualification last season despite some initial concerns about his appointment and has called for Rodgers to be given a similar chance to make his mark on the club.
“You have to remember that Brendan Rodgers is someone who was brought in to play a style of football and a vision they believe in. They have to give him time and the right tools. In the last window, if I’m honest, I don’t think he was given the tools that he needed so I think it was always going to be difficult for him.
“Hopefully he will get to the next window in a good competitive place, as that’s what Liverpool want to be, one of the top teams.
“I think for British football it’s good that Liverpool have a strong side, like Newcastle. We’re both striving to be a top-six team.”Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!