It is top v second bottom with Newcastle v Wigan at St James Park.

Rafa Benitez has asked for the full backing of the supporters for the promotion run-in, especially at the five home games, and certainly in terms of numbers the fans appear to have responded.

With Wigan only taking a reduced 1,200 ticket allocation, today is one of those rare occasions where there is set to be over 50,000 Newcastle fans inside St James Park.

Whilst there are tickets still on sale, Northumbria Police have confirmed that the attendance is anticipated to be 52,000, with sold out signs, or at least very close to that.

This will inch the average home attendance up a little higher, after 18 games so far, the St James Park Championship average is 51,113.

The police/crowd info comes via Northumbriapol NUFC, which is the ‘Twitter feed for the provision of information and advice from Northumbria Police to Newcastle United fans in the build-up to Football matches’.

“We are here at St James Park for Newcastle v Wigan.

“Great weather at the moment, pitch looking great.

“Anticipated attendance is 52000, with 1100-1200 visitors from Wigan Athletic.

“Wigan fans will use turnstiles 91-94, Leazes Stand.

“As usual, there are no cash turnstiles at St James Park for today’s match.”

Championship matches at St James Park 2016/17 so far:

52,079 Newcastle v Huddersfield

48,209 Newcastle v Reading

49,196 Newcastle v Brighton

52,117 Newcastle v Wolves

48,236 Newcastle v Norwich

51,885 Newcastle v Brentford

51,963 Newcastle v Ipswich

51,257 Newcastle v Cardiff

52,092 Newcastle v Blackburn

52,145 Newcastle v Birmingham

52,179 Newcastle v Sheffield Wednesday

52,228 Newcastle v Nottingham Forest

52,208 Newcastle v Rotherham

47,909 Newcastle v QPR

52,271 Newcastle v Derby

50,024 Newcastle v Aston Villa

52,131 Newcastle v Bristol City

51,903 Newcastle v Fulham

(All contributions from Newcastle fans welcome, send articles (as well as ideas/suggestions) to contribute@themag.co.uk)