If this fixture had dropped just a couple of weeks ago, it would have been a tale of woe for both hosts Newcastle and their visitors Aston Villa.
Between them, they only managed three wins out of a possible 23 games from September to November.
How quickly fortunes can improve, though – for the Magpies, at least.
Just two matches into December and they’ve claimed two notable scalps in Liverpool and Tottenham.
It may be too early to herald a turnaround, but I think they’ll claim a third victory on the bounce tomorrow.
Steve McClaren is keeping his side’s feet on the ground, but their defensive displays have greatly improved in their recent fixtures.
Goalkeeper Rob Elliot, in particular, has made some outstanding saves.
He won’t be as busy this weekend but, even if Jordan Ayew and Co. find some attacking verve I would still trust Elliot to keep his sheet clean.
Aston Villa, on the other hand, are without a win in 11 games in all competitions and look doomed.
I’ll be backing Newcastle, who are a generous evens with Betway to win.
The last time Villa were victorious at St James’ Park was a decade ago, when Lee Bowyer and Kieron Dyer knocked seven shades out of each other in their infamous on-field scrap.
Back to the present day, and Remi Garde has looked to add some changing room discipline to proceedings.
But whatever he’s trying at Villa Park, it isn’t working yet.
Sporting Index quote Newcastle supremacy at 0.4-0.6 and I’ll be buying.
With the bit between their teeth they really should win this against a dejected Villa outfit and any kind of win will result in a profit from this market.