Newcastle v Aston Villa: Sinking Villans offer Magpies no threat

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For much of the past 25 years, Newcastle versus Aston Villa was a Premier League staple, but for the first time in over 30 years, the clash has become a second-tier affair. Only one of these sides look like returning to the top-flight anytime soon though.

The Magpies can return to the top of the table with victory at St James’ Park tonight, and our odds of 8/13 suggest they can do just that.

Villa are price at 19/4, but given the form of Steve Bruce’s men, only the most optimistic would fancy an away success.

Bruce lost just two of his first 13 games in charge of the Birmingham outfit, but Villa’s slim play-off hopes have expired in recent weeks.

The Villans have lost six and drawn two of their last eight games.

Netting just five goals while conceding 14 in that spell suggests the Midlanders have problems at both ends of the pitch.

Not Rafa Benitez’s Newcastle however, who are the league’s top-scorers and the division’s meanest defence.

With Villa failing to score in four of their last seven, the Toon Army are a tempting 11/10 to keep a clean sheet.

Newcastle -1 on the handicap looks appealing too at 7/4, while a Newcastle/Newcastle result on the Half-Time/Full-Time is 6/4.

As for goalscorers, we need look no further than Dwight Gayle.

With 20 for the campaign, the former Crystal Palace man has only 10 less than the entire Villa squad.

And after netting seven goals in his last eight appearances, plenty will fancy Gayle to break the deadlock at 14/5.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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Richard Marsh

Richard loves his sport, especially if it involves the sound of tyres screaming around a race track. He's not fussy though and his '90s Premier League nostalgia and knowledge of team nicknames is tough to match.