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Club Brugge v Newcastle

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Clement: Maiden game in charge

Clement: Maiden game in charge

Newcastle can secure qualification to the knockout phase of the Europa League with victory over Club Brugge at the Jan Breydel Stadium on Thursday night.

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The Magpies are yet to concede a goal in the competition this season and will fancy their chances against a side in the midst of a transition.

The Belgian outfit sacked George Leekens on Sunday after a 1-0 home league loss to SV Zulte Waregem represented their fourth defeat in a row.

Caretaker boss Philippe Clement will be overseeing his first game in charge and has only 18 fully-fit squad members to choose from, with Jesper Jorgensen and Vadis Odjidja the only available midfielders.

They have one long-term casualty, with Victor Vasquez only expected to return from his collarbone injury early next year.

Meanwhile, Magpies boss Alan Pardew will call on the services of Fabricio Coloccini and Cheikh Tiote for the European encounter as both players are suspended for the weekend's Premier League clash with West Ham.

Yohan Cabaye (hamstring) and Demba Ba (calf) are doubtful and may not be risked.

James Perch has been ruled out for a month with the thigh injury he sustained in the weekend's 1-1 draw with Liverpool.

Dan Gosling, Rob Elliot, Ryan Taylor and Harris Vuckic remain long-term casualties, while Pardew could call on the forgotten Spanish striker Xisco, who notched a hat-trick for the club's under-21 side against Stoke last month.

Posted: 07/11/12 17:24

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