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Nic Ladds 13th Dec 2008 - 23:25

Draw specialists need to whistle a different Toon

Newcastle United need to start turning draws into victories, and quickly, if they are to climb away from the wrong end of the Premier League table.

The Toon Army - who travel to the south coast on Sunday for a must-win match against Portsmouth - have drawn their last four in the league. Had they won them all they would be in eighth place, where their opponents are today, instead of languishing as they do in the dreaded relegation zone.

Newcastle will climb out of the bottom three if they beat Tony Adams' team in Sunday's live match (Sky Sports 1, kick-off 13:30), and could reach as high as fourteenth with a big win. 14/5 says they'll do the business - something they've not done since beating Aston Villa 2-0 on 3 November.

In stark contrast to Joe Kinnear's struggling Magpies, Pompey are flying high at the moment, and will leapfrog Everton into seventh with a win. Fratton Park is a tough place to go to for any side (they've only lost two league games there this season), so they have rightly been made favourites in the betting and are a 21/20 chance, while the draw is priced at 11/5. Just don't tell any Newcastle fans.

Little and Large, otherwise known as Jermain Defoe and Peter Crouch, have scored a staggering 14 of the club's 19 league goals, and their odds to net again are predictably short - Defoe is 6/5 and Crouch 5/4 to score at anytime. The beanpole striker has bagged three in three matches in the league, including the first of the 90 minutes twice, so has to be backed at 5/1 to repeat the trick.

Be sure to join us for the 13:30 kick-off - when the action gets underway you'll still be able to get a bet on. Whatever happens in the match, our betlive service will have all the angles covered.

Portsmouth v Newcastle - Sunday 13:30


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