News Update :

Premier League preview: Chelsea vs Newcastle

2 Mei 2012

koclokindoblog, 2 Mei 2012, Chelsea and Newcastle lock horns in a crucial English Premier League clash at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.

Both clubs are right in the mix for a fourth-place finish and potential qualification for the Champions League, with Newcastle trailing fourth-placed Tottenham on goal difference only.

Chelsea, who could make finishing fourth irrelevant with victory in the Champions League final against Bayern Munich next month, are a point behind Newcastle and Tottenham, but have a superior goal difference.

The Blues are riding high following an incredible two months under interim manager Roberto Di Matteo.

They have lost just once since he took charge - away to Manchester City - and have progressed to the FA Cup final as well as the Champions League final following their stunning upset over Barcelona in the semis last week.

Chelsea made plenty of changes to the team that pulled off a 2-2 draw at the Camp Nou, but still had little trouble in routing Queens Park Rangers 6-1 in their most recent league outing on Sunday.

There could be even more changes for the Newcastle match, with the west London club preparing for the FA Cup final against Liverpool on Saturday.

Fernando Torres scored a hat-trick against QPR and looks likely to keep his place, assuming Di Matteo holds back Didier Drogba for Liverpool.

Newcastle notched six straight victories to move into the box seat for a fourth-place finish, but a shock 4-0 loss at the hands of Wigan opened the door for Tottenham to leapfrog them on the table.

Midfielder Cheick Tiote apologised to fans following that Wigan defeat and will be hoping to give them something to cheer about on Wednesday.

"I am disappointed for the supporters," he told

"We are thinking about Wednesday now, and hopefully we can give them something to cheer about at Chelsea.

"Before this, we win every game and this one we lost heavily, so it was not good for the team. Everyone is disappointed, but it is finished now and we need to think about Chelsea on Wednesday."

Newcastle play Manchester City and Everton to finish the season, so taking points in this game appears crucial for their Champions League aspirations.

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