Newcastle V Everton: 5 Players to Watch on Both Teams
With fixtures announced early, Evertonians probably rejoiced knowing torrid months of October and November would be followed by matches against Newcastle, Wolves and Bolton.
But now, 10 games into the season, Newcastle remain unbeaten and November suddenly seems much more difficult.
Who'd have thought that after 10 games, only Newcastle would be able to match the form of Manchester City?
The Toon defence has been incredible this term, conceding seven goals this term.
Not to be outdone, the forwards have been firing on all cylinders. Newcastle have raced out of the blocks.
Everton, on the other hand, have stumbled at the start of the season.
Currently 16th in the table, Everton face ever-incresing fan unrest. If the players don't improve soon, it could spell disaster for the Toffees.
Now that Everton have gotten the worst month of their season out of the way, they will be looking to inflict Newcastle's first defeat of the year.
Newcastle, meanwhile, will be hoping to keep pace in their hunt for a Champions League berth.
This slideshow offers insight to five players from both sides that will make a difference in the match.
The striker is important to Everton, as he is their only established forward.
But if he keeps playing like he did against his former club, expect Moyes to put more trust in his younger players.
The oft-injured Frenchman has only scored once for Everton this season, and if the Blues want to push from their lowly league position, Saha better start scoring.
A forward that scores his goals in bunches, Saha will hopefully score more often with a couple under his belt.
Having never scored against Newcastle at Everton, let's hope Saha can break through this weekend.
Signing of the season?
After signing on a free in the summer, Demba Ba has been phenomenal for Newcastle this season.
Monday night saw him get a revenge hat trick against Stoke City, a club that almost signed him in the summer but for a failed medical.
The Senegal international has eight goals in nine games for the Magpies.
Ba's pace, strength and finishing have seen him shoot out of the blocks this season. Unless Everton can keep him quiet Saturday, it will be a bad day for the Blues.
Jack Rodwell has performed solidly for Everton this season.
Before the season began, Evertonians felt it was time Rodwell turned his potential into performance.
And so far, the midfielder hasn't disappointed.
Forming a wonderful partnership with Marouane Fellaini, who is suspended for this game, Rodwell has developed well this term.
With Fellaini out, Rodwell will have to step up and run the midfield for Everton this weekend.
It will be interesting to see how he handles the challenge.
Another great signing from manager Alan Pardew is midfielder Yohan Cabaye.
The former Lille man has played every game this season for the Magpies and has formed a great partnership in the centre of midfield with Cheik Tiote.
The Frenchman's skill and poise on the ball is the perfect complement to the bite of Tiote.
With Everton missing Marouane Fellaini in their midfield, a midfield battle may determine the winner.
Dutchman Royston Drenthe will return from suspension against Newcastle United. Since his loan move to Everton in January, he has shown his class.
With a couple league goals already under his belt, Drenthe has been one of Everton's best players this season.
Before his sending off against Chelsea, he was a constant threat.
The pace and skill of the winger will pose a challenge to Newcastle's stoic defense. It will be interesting to see how Newcastle handle the pace of Drenthe and Seamus Coleman this weekend.
This spot should be taken by the entire defensive line of Newcastle, but the list is for players only.
Magpies captain Fabricio Coloccini has been the standout player of the best back line in the Premier League this season.
Newcastle have only conceded seven goals in the Premier League, and while they have only played two teams that finished in the top seven last season, it is still an amazing feat.
Coloccini had a commanding game against Stoke last week and will look to keep Louis Saha quiet at St. James' Park this weekend.
Like Seamus Coleman, striker Apostolos Vellios was unearthed by ex-Everton scout Mick Docherty and signed for a nominal fee in January 2011.
With limited first team chances in his first season, Vellios has come along strong this season. A good aerial threat who holds up the ball well, Vellios fits perfectly into David Moyes's system.
He has seen his role in the squad boosted thanks to two goals this season.
Evertonians have been crying out for Moyes to start Vellios and Saha together, but the Scotsman has so far stuck to his one-striker guns.
Watch out for Vellios coming off the bench, as he has been used mainly as a substitute this season.
Hatem Ben Arfa
Hatem Ben Arfa has only started three games for Newcastle United, but Everton already know the talented Frenchman is a game-changer.
When on loan to the Magpies last season, Ben Arfa hit a spectacular strike to give Newcastle three points on their trip to Goodison Park.
Two games later, Ben Arfa broke his leg and was out to injury until about a month ago.
Having made a handful of league and cup appearances as a substitute, Ben Arfa is approaching full fitness again. He could now be used as an impact sub against the only Premier League team he's ever scored against.
The best player currently at Everton Football Club, left back Leighton Baines is always one to watch.
His fitness, set pieces and crossing ability make him one of the best, most underrated fullbacks in world football.
Baines only has one goal this season but was unlucky last week after his superb free kick against Manchester United hit the cross bar.
Expect Baines to be his usual self, careening up and down the left wing and supplying fine crosses for Everton's forwards.
Ex-Everton midfielder Dan Gosling will not be playing, of course, as he searches for a loan move to get a bit of first team fitness.
Good career move, Dan!