Ben Arfa and Ba passed fit to start for Magpies

First published in Sport The Northern Echo: Photograph of the Author by

HATEM Ben Arfa and Demba Ba have both been passed fit to start for Newcastle United in this evening's Premier League game at Fulham.

Ben Arfa makes his first start for almost three months after shaking off the hamstring injury he sustained in the Europa League game with Maritimo.

Ba has recovered from the minor knock that was threatening his participation at Craven Cottage, and will start up front.

Papiss Cisse is expected to start in a wide position, with Ben Arfa filling the central role behind Ba.

Vurnon Anita will play alongside Cheik Tiote at the heart of midfield, with Fulham naming former Newcastle defender Aaron Hughes in their starting line-up.

FULHAM (4-4-2): Schwarzer; Reither, Hangeland, Hughes, Riise; Kacaniklic, Sidwell, Baird, Duff; Berbatov, Rodallega.

Subs: Etheridge (gk), Senderos, Petric, Karagounis, Richardson, Diarra, Dejagah.

NEWCASTLE (4-2-3-1): Krul; Simpson, Coloccini, Williamson, Santon; Tiote, Anita; Cisse, Ben Arfa, Gutierrez, Ba.

Subs: Harper (gk), Perch, Tavernier, Ferguson, Bigirimana, Marveaux, Shola Ameobi.

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