Rafa – Two Players With Knocks – Versatility Of New Signings

During his press conference yesterday Rafa indicated there were no real injuries to the squad, just one or two players who have knocks but they were not too bad.

However, with this game tonight coming just three days after Saturday’s win at Derby, that could be enough to cause the manager to show some caution.

The two players with knocks are Yoan Gouffran and Jack Colback, so they will likely be two players who will miss out tonight in order they will be 100% fit for the game against Wolves at home on Saturday.


Yoan Gouffran – problem with his hip

And Benitez has also said today that Yedlin and Lazaar who are both full-backs were signed because of their versatility and they can also play as wingers.

So maybe that’s what we will see tonight – maybe Yedlin on the wing in place of Gouffran?

Yedlin works very hard so he would be a good replacement for Yoan Gouffran and Rafa has played the young American twice in the last couple of games – since he arrived on Tyneside.

This is what Rafa has said today:

“Lazaar and Yedlin can be both full-backs and wingers, yes.” With him, because he has this pace, we thought playing away from home he could make a big impact there.”

“We have these kind of players that can play in two positions.” “It’s much better. When you have 26 or 27 players in your squad it is easier to move players around.”

“You can keep everybody happy and balance the team.” “Yedlin is really quick.” “We needed a little bit of pace at the end of the transfer window. We were looking for that and we got it.”

“Gouff has a problem with his hip, Colback is a little tight around his hamstrings,”

“We have some players with some knocks which we will have to consider, because we will have played two games in a few days.”

“Some players are not playing and they want to play, the difficult thing for me is telling a player he will not play.

“But what I want to keep telling them is that, even if they don’t play, they will be part of the team and be part of any success.”

If players do have knocks this season they will generally be rested for the next game, since Rafa has so many players just waiting for their chance in the first team.

It will also help cut down on the injuries – and that’s therefore a good situation for Rafa to have.

Comments welcome.

18 comments so far

  • Tsunki

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:00 PM

    Comment #1

    I think we can do without one of those, and the other we seem to be doing without anyway.

  • Laurent Robert The Legend

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:02 PM

    Comment #2

    So it is gona be this line up then:
    Anita Mbemba Lascells Dummet
    Yedlin Hayden Shelvey Ritchie

  • YoungMagpieFromBurnley

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:02 PM

    Comment #3

    So the team is going to be something like this then.


    Ritchie and Mbemba both played international games so Yedlin and Hanley in. Gayle looked tired and ineffective so either Murphy or Mitro in for me. Gouffran and Colback both with knocks so Lazaar or Atsu and Hayden in for those two. Gamez could also easily be put in for Anita but I doubt that one.

  • YoungMagpieFromBurnley

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:05 PM

    Comment #4

    The only one I’m unsure on is Diame or Perez, Diame has proven himself useful in the no10 but he looked really tired last game and Perez looked lively. He might be rewarded with a start.

  • Mister Tuff

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:05 PM

    Comment #5

    Jib Jibberish – wow you seem to have been a busy fellow – watching the Toon train all those years ago.
    How were you able to fit it in – you being a postman,aerial installer, a lecturer in Modern European History, and a lecturer in Psychology, County level Rugby player.
    Most impressive that you were able to spare the time.

  • YoungMagpieFromBurnley

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:07 PM

    Comment #6

    Lauren it could well be that also. If he changes little then yours could well be right. I’m just trying to read in-between the lines in his comments. He talks about keeping players happy and then this about Lazaar and Yedlin being wingers… Almost like he is justifying his team to us before they are picked.

  • BandB

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:09 PM

    Comment #7

    I think that’s essence of the rotation policy.
    Two players who have slight knocks who may not even travel, allowing two left at on Saturday home to get on the bus this time with a chance of being picked.

  • lesh

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:11 PM

    Comment #8


    It seems you’re the only one up for a group hug…..

  • YoungMagpieFromBurnley

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:11 PM

    Comment #9

    Omg laurent* sorry. Damn auto correct. My bad, should have proof read.

  • Tsunki

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:12 PM

    Comment #10

    Lesh I think he prefers a bear hug. Might be wrong.

  • YoungMagpieFromBurnley

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:12 PM

    Comment #11

    Lesh, sorry about the disappointment. 🙁

  • YoungMagpieFromBurnley

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:13 PM

    Comment #12

    Har har Tsunki. Not saying you’re wrong though. 😉

  • BandB

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:16 PM

    Comment #13

    Quick, Tsunki.
    And good on YMFB for being able to laugh too.

  • expatmag

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:16 PM

    Comment #14


    I am not trying to compare him with more recent managers although in Benetez, we have someone who has the ability to take us further ghan we gave been since the Keegan/Robdon days.

    What I am saying is that diring his first stint in charge, Keegan walked out on us several times because he didnt get his own way.

    In fact, the club went above and beyond the call to back him in the transfer market.

    I remember them spending 15 million on Ferdinand Barton Ginola and Hislop one summer, a large amount in those days. The record transfer of Shearer for 15 million pounds and what about the mid season signings of Asprilla and Batty.

    In hindsight, he prkbably should have bought a decent centre half instead of Asprilla because losing a 12 point kead at that stage of the season was criminal.

    I remember watching us lead Liverpool at Andield and Blackburn at Ewood that season and his inability to close down those games with defensive substitutions was another major deficiency.

    Yes….Newcastke United were great to watch….played beatiful fast flowing football but yhe question has to be asked…….What did we win?

    Nothing……even after building up a 12 point lead

  • YoungMagpieFromBurnley

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:19 PM

    Comment #15


    Sorry you guys haven’t seen that side to me.

    A compliment!!! I’ll take it! 🙂


    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:23 PM

    Comment #16

    He got us promoted as champions

  • BandB

    Sep 13, 2016 at 1:23 PM

    Comment #17


    I was that much discussed, but rarely attempted thing on here, humorous banter.
    I have never thought of you as being one of these dour fellows.

  • toonrobbybobson

    Sep 13, 2016 at 2:28 PM

    Comment #18

    No bones about it Rafa is our best manager EVER. I loved Sir Bobby who was our 2nd best but Rafa is more rounded as a manager.

    Hes making us hard to beat getting us organised and im sure goals will come in future. But I cant see Robson or KK having focused from the back as much.

    You could not help get carried away by Robson or KK but Rafa has that but hes also level headed, calm and instills discipline with professionalism. It was a shame the indiscipline under Robson of Dyer, Bellamy, Woodgate, Bowyer etc. DYer ultimately costing Bobby his job sadly. He came a little too late as well.

    KKs positives could be his negatives and he was unstable. To throw away the lead we had and mentally break down exposed him but what fantastic times.

    Rafa is actually in his prime, his CV backs him up to the hilt, is single minded, focused and has a plan that he would like to execute at a club he sees very much as a challenge, everyone, lets face it has failed at. I genuinely believe Rafa left to get on with it will with patience and time deliver a long awaited trophy.

    He sees a year in Championship as a chance to shape and mould a squad of relatively young players that will be so well drilled on the pitch he will look to add a few quality big name signings to next summer.

    I actually think the £30 million Sissoko money will be held back until promoted and even then he will be shrewd.

    Time will tell but we have excitement balanced with professionalism and a plan which is clearly being executed.

    In Rafa we trust.


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