Steve McClaren is said to have made it very clear to some of the underperforming players at Newcastle – which include the likes of Moussa Sissoko, Fabricio Coloccini and Aleksandar Mitrovic – that if they don´t improve their performances they will be dropped.
But it´s likely that Steve will give these players one last chance to redeem themselves with a starting place on Saturday at Crystal Palace – but i they put in another performance like last Saturday against Leicester they will be dropped for the home game against Liverpool.
Steve McClaren – what side will he choose?
Probably unchanged apart from the injured Tiote
We´d like to see a place in the starting eleven for Kevin Mbabu who looked very good when he was in the first team against Chelsea and we think he should come in for Paul Dummett at left-back – if Kevin is fit.
Paul has had two difficult games against Bournemouth and Leicester and Kevin deserves another chance.
There may not be wholesale changes made to the team for Saturday – but after that if there´s no improvement – it´s anybody´s guess.
One question to be answered is who will come in place of Cheick Tiote in central midfield and while we think McClaren could start Yoan Gouffran in that position on Saturday, we´ll give Sien de Jong a chance to play there.
It´s ridiculous that such a talented player isn´t given a chance when the side is struggling so much.
Siem at the very least deserves a start so we can see how he performs – even though he is out of position.
Newcastle are still top of the injury league as usual and we have 10 players still out injured including Cheick Tiote, Sadio Haidara, Jack Colback and Rolando Aarons.
But Karl Darlow seems ready to take his place on the bench and here´s the side that could start on Saturday:
Janmaat Coloccini (c) Mbemba Mbabu
Sissoko Anita de Jong Wijnaldum
Subs: Darlow Sterry Dummett Lascelles Thauvin Gouffran Cisse
What would your team be for Saturday?
If we still had Gael Bigirimana available we would have given Gael a chance alongside Vurnon Anita in the starting line-up and if Shane Ferguson was still at Newcastle he could have been thrown in too – since he´s starting to play well at Millwall on loan.
Apart from Cheick Tiote, Steve McClaren could field an unchanged side for Saturday with Yoan Gouffran in for the injured Cheick Tiote.
But McClaren cannot keep picking these players week in week out if they are not going to turn up for the games.
And we´d much rather see players wearing the shirt who are willing to play their socks off for the team than big-name players who don´t play well and don´t seem to care too much either.
We called the game last Saturday a watershed game – a tipping-point – because we had 7 points from the previous four games and another win would have seen us on our way.
But what happened against Leicester City shocked everybody associated with Newcastle.
A win would be great this Saturday, but we just cannot see that happening.
What do you think?