Jonas Gutierrez, as expected, will make his Newcastle United debut tonight at the very stadium he has played at for the last three seasons.
The Argentinean starts in midfield alongside Danny Guthrie, Nicky Butt and James Milner for the opening game of the Mallorca Summer Cup against Hertha Berlin.
Also new signing Sebastien Bassong is included on the Newcastle bench.
Steve Harper,as expected will start in goal, with Geremi, Steven Taylor, Claudio Cacapa and Charles N’Zogbia forming the back four. That’s a different looking back four from the first few games, especially with the full backs.
Interesting that Keegan is giving Geremi a try out at right back, where he has played many times before, and which may even be his best position.
Interesting also that Charles N’Zogbia is being given another game at left back – and perhaps Kevin is starting to like what he sees in Charles in that position, since the young French star can still come through and score goals, as he proved last season.
Danny Guthrie gets another start in central midfield with Nicky Butt, with Milner and Gutierrez presumably the wide men, and Milner may start on the left.
After his fantastic game at Hartlepool we’re a little surprised Damien Duff is not getting a start tonight – but maybe Kevin is holding him back for Sunday night.
Shola Ameobi and Alan Smith again start up front in the absence of Owen, Martins, Carroll and Viduka.
It’s a pity Kevin didn’t bring young 18 year-old Italian Fabio Zamblera along for the experience, given all the striker injuries we have right now.
Newcastle United: Steve Harper, Claudio Cacapa, Danny Guthrie, Charles N’Zogbia, James Milner, Alan Smith, Jonas Gutierrez, Geremi, Nicky Butt, Shola Ameobi, Steven Taylor
Subs: Jose Enrique, Damien Duff, David Edgar, Frank WIafe Danquah, Ben Tozer, Tim Krul, Mark Doninger, Ryan Donaldson, Jonny Godsmark, Sebastien Bassong
Hertha Berlin: Christian Fielder, Claudiano Bezarra Kaka, Teve Von Bergen, Sofian Chahed, Santos Cicero, Marko Pantelic, Rafael Caetano, Mark Stein, Rodneo De Lima, Bryan Arguez, Fabian Lustenberger
Subs: Jaroslav Drobny, Srdjan Lakic, Valeri Domovchyski, Maximulian Nicu, Sasha Bigalke, S.Radjabali Fardi, Lennart Harrtmann
Referee: Ivan Gonzalez
Hertha Berlin – tba