It seems to have underlined how short Newcastle are of good strikers with both Dwight Gayle and Aleksandar Mitrovic both out of the game tonight against Brighton after suffering concussions against Cheltenham on Tuesday night.
Newcastle have only two senior recognized strikers available in Manu Riviere and Ayoze Perez, who scored a brace against the fourth division side in the EFL Cup, but there are others who can come in.
Riviere is surplus to requirements at Newcastle and will likely be sent out on loan this season.
Rafa Benitez with Ayoze Perez in training
It looks like that Adam Armstrong could be on the bench tonight, although he is expected to go out on loan this season if – as expected – Rafa brings in another striker this summer.
This is what Rafa said yesterday, as he talked about the striker options he has for today’s game and how we need experience in the team this season:
“We have different options.” “I will have 20 players, with Manu Riviere, Adam Armstrong, Ayoze, Yoan Gouffran and Mo Diame all as options up front.”
“Then we have to decide. We will leave two players out.” “We have five options in attack and we must manage with them.”
“We have young players like Armstrong and Jamie Sterry who we have just given new contracts.” “It’s not easy when you have young players because you need experience to go up.”
“You need to bring players in with experience.” “For the young players it’s difficult for them because they can do well but they don’t have the experience.”
“If they stay here and sit on the bench they won’t get experience so maybe some will go on loan.”
“I am talking about Adam, he knows there are clubs asking and if we sign a striker he knows he will have to go on loan.”
This is the team we think Rafa could start tonight:
Anita Mbemba Lascelles (c) Dummett
Gouffran Diame Gouffran
Subs: Selz Gamez Hanley Clark Colback Riviere Armstrong
What would your team be for this important clash between two promotion candidates?