In the last two Premier League fixtures of the Premier League festive period, Everton host Bolton and Manchester United take on Newcastle United on Wednesday evening as Paddy Power and Ladbrokes make the Toon big outsiders.
The players are bound to be tired after a hectic month or so, but all four teams in action on Wednesday evening need the points, so they must maintain their focus.
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Looking at Everton v Bolton to begin with, there is no doubt that it is a game the home side will be expected to win. They have had a solid start to the campaign and if they are to push on, they need to defeat bottom of the table Bolton.
As for Wanderers, well every point they pick up is valuable in their battle for survival. At the moment they are rock bottom and they have Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal to come in January, so they really could do with something from Goodison Park.
Looking at the team news for this one, Everton are able to call upon loan signing Landon Donovan, while Bolton could be without first choice goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Moving onto Newcastle v Manchester United, this is a very interesting fixture. They have had some great battles down the years and this should be another one.
At the moment Newcastle will be content with their league position of 7th, but three points in this one would be an excellent boost for them as the Premier League heads into a mini-break for the FA Cup.
As for Sir Alex Ferguson’s men, well they need to win every game at the moment. The battle between them and Manchester City for the title is extremely close and no dropped points can be tolerated. Especially after the defeat at home to Blackburn last time out.
In terms of the significant team news for this one, Gabriel Obertan should be fit for Newcastle despite an injured toe, while Wayne Rooney is set to start for the visitors after he was dropped for the defeat to Blackburn.
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