EPL Preview: Hull City Vs Newcastle United

Brian RhodesSenior Analyst IMarch 13, 2009

EPL Preview: Hull City Vs Newcastle United, Kingston Communication Stadium, Kingston Upon Hull, East Yorkshire, England, 15:00GMT.

It's Cup final day at the KC Stadium in East Yorkshire today. Well according to Michael Owen, it is. All week in the press we have been hearing about how important this game is to the Magpies, how it is their game of the season, their Cup final no less, but what has happened to the Toon army to make a game against lowly new-boys Hull City be a Cup final?

With the Magpies' next two games against Arsenal and Chelsea the need to pick up points against the Tigers is seen as imperative by the Newcastle management team.

Already this season, the Magpies and the Tigers have met three times with the Tigers winning out on two occasions and the pair battling out a solitary draw in the FA Cup.

The Toon Army see themselves sitting just above the relegation places with goal difference the only thing between survival and relegation. They are a full four points behind their opponents Hull City and with arguably a much harder run in to contend with.

Newcastle will be buoyed by the return to the first team of their 'Cup finalist' Michael Owen. Who despite lengthy spells out injured this season is still their top scorer with ten goals so far this season.

Caretaker manager Chis Houghton will also be happy to see the return of Nicky Butt and Damian Duff who will be having late fitness tests but they will have to do without the services of Kevin Nolan who is still sidelined through suspension.

However, Habib Beye and Danny Guthrie will not be ready for a return to first team action.

Phil Brown has been playing down the six pointer as nothing more than a another day at the office and also trying to divert some of the comments from the Hull City Chairman Paul Duffen.

Duffen has been stating that he thinks only another six points will be needed by the Tigers this season for survival but Brown has been advocating that many more points would be needed to guarantee top flight survival for the East Yorkshire outfit.

The Tigers will be happy to see the return to the first team squad of Andy Dawson who missed the win at Fulham due to suspension. The Tigers will be without the services of George Boateng who is not expected to return until next season along with Hull City's record signing Jimmy Bullard.

The Tiger-nation will be hoping that the win against Fulham will be the catalyst to greater things with the all important last ten games of the Premiership season kicking off this weekend.

With just one win in the league since Christmas, Phil Brown will be looking at the run in and praying that it doesn't come down to the last game of the season needing a win against Manchester United at the KC Stadium.