Newcastle United Vs West Bromwich Albion, Mon 18 Jan 2010

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Chris Hughton will revert back to his strongest XI as Newcastle look to re-establish their commanding lead at the top of the Championship against third-placed West Brom on Monday night.

The Magpies boss rotated his ranks for the club`s two recent FA Cup encounters against Plymouth but that policy will certainly be ditched as attention switches back to league matters, with Nottingham Forest now also breathing down their necks.

Peter Lovenkrands netted a hat-trick to see off the Pilgrims 3-0 in their midweek replay but he will not be available having returned to Denmark for family reasons.

Alan Smith has fully recovered from an eye injury sustained during the initial goalless draw at Home Park and should start.

Fellow midfielder Joey Barton remains the only player on the injury list as he nears the end of his lengthy recovery from a foot injury.

On-loan full-back Danny Simpson is due to make his final appearance for the club before returning to Manchester United although Hughton is still trying to negotiate a permanent deal.

West Brom head coach Roberto Di Matteo has a near full-strength squad at his disposal for the encounter.

Wide man Chris Brunt has recovered from illness while right-back Gianni Zuiverloon has overcome an ankle problem he picked up in last Friday`s 3-1 home defeat to Forest - a result which saw the Reds leapfrog Albion into second place.

Striker Ishmael Miller made his long-awaited return from the bench against Billy Davies`s side after a 13-month battle to overcome a knee injury, and he should again be among Di Matteo`s substitutes.

That just leaves James Morrison (heel) as the only player in the treatment room, although he is hoping to make a return to first-team action before the end of January after nine months on the sidelines. Centre-back Abdoulaye Meite remains at the African Nations Cup with Ivory Coast.

Di Matteo has promised changes to his starting line-up after the disappointing loss to Forest, with central midfielder Youssouf Mulumbu the most likely man to earn a recall.

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Joey Barton
West Bromwich Albion
James Morrison
Gianni Zuiverloon
Chris Brunt
Alan Smith
Youssouf Mulumbu
Newcastle United
Manchester United
Roberto Di Matteo
Nottingham Forest
Abdoulaye Meite
Peter Lovenkrands
Danny Simpson
Ishmael Miller
FA Cup
Plymouth Argyle
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