Townsend has four goals since joining from Spurs in January.

Townsend has four goals since joining from Spurs in January.

On the back of their best run of the season, Rafa Benitez takes his Newcastle side to Villa Park to potentially overcome a ten-game winless streak away from home, with already relegated Aston Villa the opposition.

Both sides have had poor seasons, but Newcastle are on the back of a four match unbeaten run, having found some fight and character when they needed it most.

Villa had no such attitude, and will be playing Championship football next season, as their fans protest against the hierarchy for the remainder of this campaign.

In the 74th minute of the game, the fans are planning to release hundreds of balloons and inflatables, as a sign of a ‘release of energy’ around the club.

Aww, isn’t that sweet.

Don’t expect any sympathy from Newcastle fans though, as they rightly still haven’t forgiven you for celebrating wildly when the Geordies were relegated in 2009, despite no previous animosity between the clubs.

Maybe Newcastle fans can turn the tables tomorrow, karma’s a bitch ey?

TEAM NEWS

Having released Gabriel Obertan and Sylvain Marveaux before their contracts ran out at the end of the season, Benitez has only the players who are up for the fight at his disposal.

He shouldn’t make too many changes to the one that beat Crystal Palace last weekend, although Aleksandar Mitrovic is pushing for a start ahead of Papiss Cisse up front.

Yoan Gouffran may be involved in the squad, having narrowly avoided the same fate as Obertan and Marveaux.

Tim Krul, Rob Elliot, Daryl Janmaat, Fabricio Coloccini and Massadio Haidara are all injured.

Former Mackem Kieran Richardson is a doubt for Villa, while Jordan Amavi is injured.

Jores Okore has asked not to be selected for the team, while one-time captain Gabby Agbonlahor is still fat and probably on a shisha smoking binge.

Charles “Insomnia” N’Zogbia hasn’t played since 2015, while Adama Traore – signed from Barcelona in the summer – won’t play because one more appearance will trigger a £35,000 wage increase, taking him to a staggering £75,000 per week deal as Villa head into the Championship.

STATS

Newcastle are undefeated in their last nine league games against Villa.

Only four goals have been scored in the last four games between the sides.

Villa are on their longest losing streak since 1963, and will set a new record if Newcastle win tomorrow.