It's North-East v North London this weekend

First published in Sport

When Newcastle faced Spurs on the season's opening day, there was a sense of new season optimism.

A 2-1 victory increased expectation but since then the pair have enjoyed differing fortunes. Tottenham, Paddy Power's 7/10 favourites as the pair meet today, are Champions League contenders, while Newcastle are languishing.

Subsequently, the Magpies are 9/2 with Stan James to complete a league double and 3/1 at Betvictor to grab a point. Ladbrokes quote 7/1 for a 1-1- scoreline and Skybet offer 6/1 for both halves to finish all square.

Travelling fans can receive some help in the handicaps, where Bet365 give Alan Pardew's charges a goal start at 5/4 and Betvictor price United at 29/10 in the Draw No Bet market.

Coral chalk the Magpies up at 11/1 to win despite the first 45 minutes being level and a slender victory by a one-goal margin is available via Paddy Power at of 6/1

Yoan Gouffran will attract first scorer cash at 11/1 (Betfred) and will be well backed at 4/1 with Skybet to score at any time.

Sunderland started the campaign with a decent point at Arsenal. The Black Cats enjoy home advantage as the pair meet again but the bookies still believe they're outsiders, Betvictor chalking them up at 7/2 to get the better of the visitors, bet365's 10/11 favourites.

Inevitably, some will fancy another stalemate at 13/5 courtesy of Stan James while William Hill can expect cash for their 10/1, marked against another 0-0 and home fans might consider backing their team in the Draw No Bet market at odds of 23/10 via Betvictor.

Considered more realistic is a 1-0 triumph, at 12/1 with Bet365, in a match priced by Paddy Power at 5/6 to produce fewer than three goals and as an alternative, there's Coral's 11/2 for Sunderland to sneak it by a one-goal margin.

Coral, meanwhile, rate new boy Danny Graham at 8/1 to add to his season's tally with the opener and it's 7/4 with Bet365 for the game's first goal to come from any Sunderland player.

Middlesbrough's strength at home has been a major contributing factor to their promotion push and bookies expect Tony Mowbray's men to improve on their already impressive Riverside statistics as they host Barnsley.

Coral rate Boro at 5/6 to get the better of the relegation-threatened Tykes, Betvictor's 18/5 outsiders while William Hill make it 5/2 to finish all square and it's 12/1 via Skybet to finish goalless.

One their own patch though, Boro should have the upper hand and Ladbrokes price them at 8/1 to notch twice without reply, just as they did in the corresponding fixture last season.

Boro also appeal in the handicaps, at 12/5 with Paddy Power when starting a goal behind while Coral post 2/1 against Mowbray's troops leading at the end of each half and it's a generous 7/2 (Skybet) for Scott McDonald to hand Middlesbrough a 1-0 lead.

Hartlepool, looking for their third win on the bounce, face a tough trip to Swindon and they're Betvictor's 8/1 underdogs at the County Ground, where a point (7/2, Stan James) would be a decent return.

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