It’s been a hectic pre-season for Newcastle (too many games) and after playing at Sheffield United on Sunday, Newcastle will play York City tonight at Bootham Crescent on what will be a rain-sodden pitch.
Steve McClaren has just announced his team and there will be chances given to a number of fringe players – Bigirimana, Ferguson, Satka and Abeid all start – and new signing Aleksandar Mitrovic gets his first start and first appearance for the Magpies tonight.
The senior players are being held back for the final game of pre-season against Borussia Monchengladbach at St. James’ Park on Saturday afternoon – 3:00pm kick-off – and then there will be 8 days before we host Southampton in our Premier league kick-off.
Newcastle (4-2-3-1): Karl Darlow; Gael Bigirimana, Lubomir Satka, Jamaal Lascelles, Shane Ferguson; Mehdi Abeid, Yoan Gouffran; Rolando Aarons, Siem de Jong (c), Ayoze Perez; Aleksandar Mitrovic
Substitutes: Rob Elliot, Olivier Kemen, Lewis Suddick, Louis Johnson
It’s a familiar 4-2-3-1 formation with the three up front being Aarons, de Jong and Perez with Siem in the number 10 role behind Mitrovic up front.
Olivier Kemen is on the bench and the 18 year-old appears to be unhappy with his lot at Newcastle, and may be leaving the club soon, having had talks with AC Milan – we hope he stays.
Siem de Jong is also in the starting line-up and will captain the side, with our two lads from Nottingham Forest – goalkeeper Karl Darlow and center-back Jamaal Lascelles also in the starting line-up.
With young goalkeeper Freddy Woodman going on loan to Crawley Town until early January, Darlow will fight it out with Rob Elliot for the back-up goalkeeper position with Tim Krul looking like he’s back to his old self in pre-season.
It’s a chance for some of the fringe players to catch Steve McClaren’s eye tonight.