The Newcastle United squad that travelled to Doncaster Rovers for the friendly on Friday night, consisted of 21 players.
The confirmed Newcastle team v Doncaster – Langley, Murphy, Lascelles, Dummett, Lewis, Hayden, Hendrick, Sean Longstaff, Fraser, Saint-Maximin, Wilson
Then the Subs: Thompson, Watts, Clark, McEntee, Matty Longstaff, Allan, Gayle, Young, Fernandez, Bondswell
Not time to pass the panic button just yet BUT you have to say that with three weeks to go until the Premier League season kicks off, this Newcastle United squad looks a ‘little’ light.
I would say light in terms of both numbers AND quality.
The lack of new signings really starting to show, on top of the reasons (see below) why 13 first team players are missing from this Newcastle United squad for the Doncaster friendly.
Of the 10 subs named tonight, only Clark, Gayle, Fernandez and Matty Longstaff are first team squad players.
As for the 11 who start, obviously 20 year old Langley is standing in due to the absence of the four senior keepers.
Whilst overall, you look at this Newcastle United squad and it does look uncompetitive. There are players (see below) to come back in but are they going to seriously improve the quality of tonight’s friendly team / squad.
Bringing in new players each season, especially for a struggling team like Newcastle United, is essential.
Here’s hoping that there are an awful lot of positives coming our way before West Ham at home on Sunday 15 August, or else this is looking a tough tough season ahead.
The 13 Newcastle United squad players who are missing Doncaster:
Joelinton – Newcastle United state, not recovered from thigh injury that forced him off early in the defeat to York on Sunday.
Javier Manquillo – No explanation by the club as to why the Spaniard is missing, also missed York but has been featured in NUFC training photos this week.
Matt Ritchie – The club say that he has a ‘slight knock’ that keeps him out tonight.
Yoshinori Muto – Club report that it is an ‘illness’ that has prevented the striker’s involvement.
Karl Darlow – Currently isolating for ten days after testing positive for Covid.
Mark Gillespie – Self isolating as a close contact with Darlow.
Freddie Woodman – Self isolating as a close contact with Darlow.
Jonjo Shelvey – Calf injury and could miss start of season.
Martin Dubravka – After surgery for a broken metatarsal looks sure to miss the start of the 2021/22 season.
Miguel Almiron – Recovering from a hamstring injury and having extended break after international commitments this summer.
Fabian Schar – Having extended break after international commitments this summer.
Emil Krafth – Having extended break after international commitments this summer.
Elliot Anderson – Has been forced to rest for four weeks (The Mail) to try and shake off a hip injury.
Newcastle United pre-season friendlies:
Sunday 18 July – York City 1 Newcastle 0
Sunday 18 July Harrogate Town 2 Newcastle 1 (This was originally a first team fixture with some Under 23 added but it became solely a Under 23 NUFC players after Karl Darlow tested positive for Covid and first team and Under 23s had to be kept apart)
Friday 23 July – Doncaster Rovers away (7pm)
Tuesday 27 July – Rotherham United away (7pm)
Friday 30 July – Burton Albion away (7.45pm)
Saturday 7 August – Norwich home (2pm)