Good news today in that Peter Lovenkrands and Danny Guthrie are almost certain to be ready to play on Sunday afternoon against Aston Villa, after picking up slight injuries and having to sit out the 3-0 mauling at Manchester United.
Peter Lovenkrands - back on Sunday
And it will be interesting to see what team Chris Hughton puts out against the Villa, who looked very impressive in walloping West Ham 3-0 at home last Saturday.
Kevin McDonald is acting as the caretaker manager after the too egotistical Martin O’Neill put in his shock resignation at the very worst time for the Villa club last week.
Chris talked about Newcastle’s two fit players:
“We’re expecting both Danny and Peter to be available which will improve our options,” . “The reason they travelled with us to Manchester was because the injuries were both very minor.”
“I was hopeful they would be back but we kept them back so as not to risk them because we have a long season in front of us.” “They will both train today, Thursday, with a view to being part of the squad for the Aston Villa game.”
And Sol Campbell, who turns 36 early next month, (he’s not 37 as the Journal says today), is getting close to full fitness and his Newcastle debut, and he may be in contention for the trip to Wolves the following weekend.
Sol has been doing some intensive work with the club’s fitness coaches, which seems to be paying off.
The 35-year-old missed most of pre-season, but he is now a lot closer to being full fit, as Chris said today:
“Sunday is too early for Sol but he’s getting much closer now,” . “Could we put him out on Sunday? Well possibly but we’d prefer not to because we’re looking at it from the long-term.”
“It is not just a question of one or two games, it’s about getting him back properly to play for the rest of the season. If we rushed him back then he is susceptible to picking up knocks and that is not what we want to happen.”
“Sol knows he is physically behind the others but he is making good progress and I’m happy with him.”
It will be good when Sol is available but with Williamson and Coloccini looking good as a central defense partnership at Manchester United, under trying conditions to say the least, Sol will not just walk into the side.
But Sol has that tremendous experience, which counts for an awful lot at the highest levels of English football.