Rafa Benitez had just announced his team for the second round EFL tie tonight at St. James’ Park against League Two club Cheltenham Town and Karl Darlow and Jesus Gamez get their first run-outs for Newcastle this season.
Newcastle (4-2-3-1): Karl Darlow; Jamie Sterry, Jamaal Lascelles, Grant Hanley, Jesus Gamez; Jonjo Shelvey, Jack Colback; Rolando Aarons, Mohamed Diame, Ayoze Perez; Aleksandar Mitrovic
Substitutes: Matz Sels, Paul Dummett, Chancel Mbemba, Vurnon Anita, Isaac Hayden, Yoan Gouffran, Dwight Gayle
Gamez starts at left-back so we’ll be able to get a first look at the player and it’s good to see Karl Darlow get a chance – he was great for us in the last eight games of last season after Rob Elliot was injured.
Scottish International Grant Hanley also gets a start alongside captain Jamaal Lascelles in central defense and Mitro is back up front with Dwight Gayle taking a rest on the bench.
The two holding midfielders are Jonjo Shelvey and local lad Jack Colback and the two wingers are Ayzoe Perez and Rolando Aarons.
Powerhouse Mohamed Diame starts in the number 10 slot behind Mitro and it gives him a chance to get fitter.
We would expect him to play maybe around an hour tonight, since he’s likely to start against Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday.
A massive 92% think we will win this game tonight, but we cannot be complacent and we certainly cannot take anything for granted – we have to win this match tonight.
Howay The Lads!!