Premier League Preview: Everton v Newcastle United
By Football News
Everton are looking to go six Premier League games without defeat when they welcome Newcastle United to Goodison Park on Monday.
The Merseyside club have only once gone six matches unbeaten at the start of a Premier League season, in 2006-07, a 2-1 loss away to Middlesbrough ended their run on that occasion.
Roberto Martinez's side head into the fixture with back-to-back victories over Chelsea and West Ham respectively under their belt.
They twice fell behind at Upton Park, but Romelu Lukaku headed home the winner after two sublime free-kicks from full-back Leighton Baines.
Those strikes saw Baines move onto 21 Premier League goals overall, only John Terry has scored more as a defender with 32.
On Everton's unbeaten start, Martinez said: "It is a fantastic label to have but it is something we will have to work really hard to extend.
"It is a beautiful label to have but in September you don't win anything."
Gareth Barry is also set to achieve a personal landmark.
The midfielder - who joined on loan from Manchester City on transfer deadline day - will become the 10th man in Premier League history to make 500 appearances if he features against Newcastle.
Everton will be without Leon Osman (groin) and centre-back Antolin Alcaraz (hamstring), while there are doubts over the availability of striker Arouna Kone (knee) and Steven Pienaar (hamstring).
Newcastle were defeated 3-2 by Hull City at St James' Park last Saturday, but bounced back with a strong performance in Wednesday's 2-0 victory over Leeds United in the League Cup courtesy of goals from Papiss Cisse and Yoan Gouffran.
But recent history does not bode well for Alan Pardew's side, with Newcastle winning just one of their last 10 Premier League fixtures against Everton.
Pardew is optimistic ahead of the meeting, however, but urged his side to improve defensively.
"What it does look like in our team is that we've got goals," he said. "For the first time in a long time, that bodes well. But we have to lock the back door.
"We didn't do that against Hull, and that's the consistency we need."
Newcastle will definitely be missing Shola Ameobi (knock), Jonas Gutierrez and Steven Taylor (both hamstring), while Yohan Cabaye is doubtful with a groin injury sustained against Hull.
The head-to-head record is edged narrowly by Newcastle who have 62 league wins to Everton's 60.