One of the positive things coming out of the game on Saturday was the form of Kevin Mbabu, who made his Premier League debut playing out of position at left back and he was our Man of the Match.
He handled £21M Pedro well and it was quite amazing how well the 20 year-old played and he may be given the task of containing £55M Kevin De Bruyne at Manchester City on Saturday.
Kevin Mbabu – likely to start at the Etihad
With both Sadio Haidara and Paul Dummett unavailable for the game, he´s fully expected to start his second game in the Premier League.
During training late last week Steve McClaren has admitted he asked Kevin if he had ever played at left back and he was surprised by his response.
This is what Steve McClaren has revealed today:
“It was funny because we were thinking what we play,” “He trained with us and we had an idea.” “We just asked him and he just nonchalantly said ‘yeah, I’ve played left-back’.”
“Any problems? He went ‘no, no problems’. So I didn’t say he was, and he didn’t know until late. That always helps.”
“He settled well. The crowd were fantastic – they really responded to him.”
Kevin was delighted with his debut and really upbeat:
“It’s a really good feeling to play my first game in the league – it was an amazing experience.”
“I was a little bit nervous, but once the game started everything was good.”
Kevin made a good start to the game on Saturday, and when his name was on the team sheet one though is that he could be the weak link for Newcastle, simply because he was untested and after all we were playing the Premier League Champions.
But the youngster played really well, and it looks like we could have a real player here, if he can keep fit.
When he was signed from Swiss club Servette in January 2013, he had a big reputation as a top player coming through, but he has suffered a lot of injuries in his thirty months on Tyneside.
So if he can stay fit he could even get a long run in the side out of position at left back.
But he´s such a good technical player you couldn´t really tell he was playing out of position in his first appearance in the Premier League.
Let´s hope Kevin can keep up his good form on Saturday.