Rafa To Deliver Important Injury Update In Press Conference


Rafa will give his press conference at 1:00 pm today and the first question from the local journalists is likely to be what the status of striker Dwight Gayle is and whether he is in the squad for tomorrow’s vitally important game at Huddersfield.

Rafa has been unwilling to put Dwight in the squad until he is quite sure mentally that everything is in fact OK with the hamstring he pulled in the game at Brentford on 14th January.

Rafa Benitez talks to Dwight Gayle as he leaves pitch against Aston Villa

With this being Dwight’s third hamstring problem in the last 16 months, it’s hardly surprising he’s a bit wary of returning too soon.

The good news is that before he played at Aston Villa for about 30 minutes before having to come off,  the scan on the hamstring was clear and after the game the scan was also clear.

So there doesn’t seem to be any physical damage there and he didn’t make things any worse by playing against Villa.

Dwight has been doing special training to get fit for the run-in to the season when he could be a key player for Newcastle, given the lad can score at anytime.

Dwight already has 20 Championship goals in just 20 league appearances for us this season.

We have missed his creativity up front and if he is not available tomorrow it leaves an interesting selection poser for Benitez.

The experiment to play Yoan Gouffran up front didn’t really work  on Tuesday night, but Daryl Murphy looked good when he came on as the target man up front and Daryl almost scored a couple of times.

It could be that Daryl gets a start tomorrow at the Terriers and we haven’t really used the Irishman’s vast experience of the Championship much this season.

But given the way Huddersfield play Rafa will know whether Daryl will fit with the game plan for tomorrow’s game, which is being shown live on TV around the world.

It should be an interesting press conference this afternoon with Rafa.

How Will Newcastle Fare At Huddersfield?

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42 comments so far

  • jimmysmith

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:13 AM

    Comment #1

    Good player for sure, but he’s not the only good option we have and we’ve done well without him, so I don’t fully understand the desperation to get him back in the starting 11. Happy to see him come off the bench, and regain his place somewhere in the side on form and fitness like anyone else.

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  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:20 AM

    Comment #2

    42beautifulmind // Mar 2, 2017 at 10:39 PM

    I don’t get why people are scared of facing Huddersfield. They are a team punching above their weight. They’ve been quite lucky with some of their wins with other teams missing great chances against them I. E Leeds at home. Leeds should have easily got somthing. I think we’ll beat them comfortably!

    *************************************************

    Hudds are not punching above their weight. That’s what certain pundits were saying in the early months. They’ve been no more lucky than any other team. On the contrary, they’ve worked extremely hard throughout and got a lot of valuable late goals.

    I was at the Leeds game. It was great entertainment. Hudds were by far the better team. Played some great football and deserved the win.

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  • giimps

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:24 AM

    Comment #3

    Didnt realise it was 20 goals in 20 appearances, thats some stat if true, also means hes missed 16 games yet were top of the league .
    I would love to see him back flanked by Ritchie and Atsu, im not sure who i would put in the 10 role, maybe Gouff or Perez.
    Its a conundrum im pleased i dont have to decode.

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  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:26 AM

    Comment #4

    Gayle
    I would deffo not bring him back for the Huddersfield game – maybe the Reading game on Tuesday gives him a another 3 days or so to recover.

    If we win at Huddersfield without him I would not bring him back for the Reading game but the Fulham game would be ideal in my eyes.

    With the win at Brighton which I think was the most important one to win of the three away games (all important like). It left us in pole position with the others chasing

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  • jimmysmith

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:27 AM

    Comment #5

    20 in 26

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:27 AM

    Comment #6

    I’m more worried about the Huddersfield than I was the Brighton game.

    They’ve got a number of players than can punish us. More than Brighton

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  • toontaff2

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:33 AM

    Comment #7

    ‘Uddersfield have only +8 goal difference – if we had that, I could imagine the comments on here! Scored 22 goals less than us, conceded 8 more.
    I think they have only won 2 games all season by more than 1 goal and got stuffed by Fulham, 5-0.
    They have been beaten twice by Sheff Wed.
    They will not be looking forward to playing Sheff Wed or Fulham in the play-offs.

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  • sing in the corner

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:35 AM

    Comment #8

    Yeah no real need to bring Dwight back for this game, I agree. I think Murph deserves a start myself. Brighton result has not only given us a massive confidence shot in the arm, but it’s also bought us time and space. Brighton will do well to come straight back from their little setbacks of recent weeks, personally I think they have gone now as far as 1st place is concerned.
    Huddersfield are a different matter. I think wearing them down and pouncing late may be the tactic to employ again this weekend. They do work hard and are fit, but they will flag late in games increasingly as the season progresses, I think.

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  • clinath@ed

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:37 AM

    Comment #9

    Leicester punched above their weight, and they won the league. You take any side lightly at your peril

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  • sing in the corner

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:37 AM

    Comment #10

    I know Rafa would rap the knuckles for harking back…but can’t help remembering the Bristol 2 points we dropped needlessly last week…
    I will repent…. 🙂

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  • clinath@ed

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:38 AM

    Comment #11

    this will sound cliche…but if we keep the ball off them, and make them run, then the points will be ours. If we sit back and watch….ah, well!

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  • toontaff2

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:41 AM

    Comment #12

    @11
    Well I’m going to sit back, beer in had and enjoy!
    They surprised us in August, but now we know how they play.

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  • Scubadivingmagpie

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:43 AM

    Comment #13

    Going back to Dave Prutton’s comments, he should really get his facts right. I don’t mind the guy making predictions, after all we would all like to steal a living in a job that holds no accountability for errors or stupidity. Just please at least have genuine basis for predictions and not just spout off any old rubbish! He may feel Huddersfield will win and he may be correct but Mr. Prutton says he worries about Newcastle when Gayle is not in the team though results show:
    Beat Birmingham 3 – 1 (FA Cup); Ritchie 2, Gouffran 1
    Beat Rotherham 4 – 0; Murphy 2, Ritchie, Perez
    Lost Oxford 0 – 3; Let us say no more!
    Beat QPR 2 – 0; Shelvey, Ritchie
    Beat Derby 1 – 0; Ritchie
    Beat Wolves 1 – 0; Mitrovic
    Drew Norwich 2 – 2; Perez, Lascelles
    Beat Villa 2- 0; Lansbury OG, Gouffran (Gayle made a cameo appearance but went off again)
    Drew Bristol City 2 – 2; Smith OG, Clark
    Beat Brighton 2 – 1; Diame, Perez
    So unless I’ve made an error that’s 19 goals in 10 games, conceding 9 goals and have 9 different goal scorers not including the own goals!

    In the same time Brighton have
    Lost Preston 0 – 2
    Beat Sheff Wed 2 – 1; Knockeart 2
    Beat Cardiff 1- 0; Hemed
    Lost Lincoln 1 – 3; Towell
    Lost Huddersfield 1 – 3; Hemed
    Drew Brentford 3 – 3; March, Duffy, Hemed
    Beat Burton 4 – 1; Hemed 2, Baldock, Murray
    Drew Ipswich 1 – 1; Hemed
    Beat Barnsley 2 – 0; Baldock
    Beat Reading 3 – 0; Baldock, Murphy, Knockeart
    Lost Newcastle 1 – 2; Murray (Madley gets the assist)

    19 Goals in 11 games, conceding 16 goals and have 8 different goal scorers. I would check the Huddersfield results as a comparison but really can’t be bothered! As I said the man is entitled to make his predictions, I agree it will be a very hard game and we’ll need to be at our best not to lose, let alone win. But as for worrying about us we compare favourably with our closest competitor, whilst missing our top goal scorer, they have both of their top scorers.

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  • beautifulmind

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:43 AM

    Comment #14

    The teams at the top we have played and beat so far were generally on good runs until they met us. I think it will be close but I can’t see us losing this one. I think we should be able to control the game.Having watched a number of Huddersfield games they give teams quite a few chances and they have carried their luck which won’t last

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  • beautifulmind

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:44 AM

    Comment #15

    The teams at the top we have played and beat so far were generally on good runs until they met us. I think it will be close but I can’t see us losing this one. I think we should be able to control the game.Having watched a number of Huddersfield games they give teams quite a few chances and they have carried their luck which won’t last

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  • Ron Knee

    Mar 3, 2017 at 9:48 AM

    Comment #16
  • expatmag

    Mar 3, 2017 at 10:06 AM

    Comment #17

    SCUBADIVING

    Just done a quick check on Hudderfield over the last 10 league games

    Played 10
    Won drew 2
    Lost 1
    For 16
    Against 9
    Points 22

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  • expatmag

    Mar 3, 2017 at 10:06 AM

    Comment #18

    Won 7

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  • lochinvar

    Mar 3, 2017 at 10:12 AM

    Comment #19

    Start again with Gouffran – he’ll keep defenders occupied.
    Put Gayle on the bench and use the psychology of will he / wont he to force the game for them leaving Ritchie and Atsu more space to play in and Perez becomes a greater threat later on – at least 20/25 minutes in second half ?

    Rafa being Rafa might just start with Mitro – as a battering ram to wear them out !

    We shall see

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  • hibbit

    Mar 3, 2017 at 10:13 AM

    Comment #20

    this is more of a must not get beat game than a must win one

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  • Scubadivingmagpie

    Mar 3, 2017 at 10:20 AM

    Comment #21

    Expat thanks, we still compare and Prutton is talking rubbish. It will be a hard game though, and lets hope we don’t lose this one!

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  • martoon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 10:24 AM

    Comment #22

    sing in the corner @10 – You can’t go back but if before the 2 games you had been offered 4 points you probably would have taken it – you just would not have expected it to be draw with Bristol and beat Brighton!

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  • SPRINGY

    Mar 3, 2017 at 10:35 AM

    Comment #23

    just hope the players dont take the win at brighton and get complacent and half arse it at huddersfield,we dont want to be going 1 or 2 nil down coz they are not switched coz they are to busy patting each other on the back and high fiving each other like movie jocks….be professional,nowt daft,nowt silly and good crisp passing….a good win here and it would be a big step to promotion,not the end of the world to draw or lose but the doubt it would put in other teams heeds if we were to win, myt be huge.

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  • giimps

    Mar 3, 2017 at 10:48 AM

    Comment #24

    ExpAt 23 pts
    Won 7 =21
    Drew 2=2
    21+2=23
    Not that it matters, still impressive but they havent played us

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  • clinath@ed

    Mar 3, 2017 at 10:50 AM

    Comment #25

    movement will tire them quicker than a battering ram. run that back 4 ragged THEN batter them. IMO…!

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:05 AM

    Comment #26

    Huddersfield will press us high up the pitch, so Atsu and Ritchie may have more joy on Saturday imo

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:07 AM

    Comment #27

    Play Diame alongside Shelvey and Perez behind gouf

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:15 AM

    Comment #28

    Fulham tickets arrived. BOOM!

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  • clinath@ed

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:15 AM

    Comment #29

    Cannot allow Hudders to press us back. They gave Man City a hard time till they took the ball off them then pushed them back. They will tear us a new one if we sit back.

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  • clinath@ed

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:16 AM

    Comment #30

    I like the idea of Diame and Shelvey together, but I cannot see it happening in this game. Not one to experiment in…

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:18 AM

    Comment #31

    Clin

    Exactly mate. We need to up the tempo and get the ball out wide or through the middle rather than sideways and back passing. Because Huddersfield will cause us problems

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #32

    Diame is more effective in that role. He breaks play up. He’s not suited in the No 10 role imo

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  • clinath@ed

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #33

    sorry Shire, just reread ALL your post this time. I agree.

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:21 AM

    Comment #34

    He’s no good with his back to goal. He’s better off bursting through the midfield

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  • clinath@ed

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:21 AM

    Comment #35

    Diame certainly looked a lot more effective against Brighton when he dropped deeper.

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  • clinath@ed

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #36

    Shire, I think I said the same on wednesday morning

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:23 AM

    Comment #37

    Clin

    He did indeed mate. Just like the Norwich game and Bristol too. He’s good at retrieving the ball and busting through the middle of the park

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  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #38

    Looking at Martoon’s pre-season prediction stats it would appear that I was the most optimistic by a mile for how many points we’d get. I really didn’t expect us to lose so many games, especially at home. I also thought we’d get more draws than we have. Oh well perhaps I can do better next year in the EPL.

    Shelvey is looking good for Player of the season and if Gouffron gets his shooting boots on he could still catch Dwight. Wouldn’t bet on it though. 🙂

    He’d need to score just under two per game for the remainder of the season, could that happen, again I wouldn’t put money on it. 🙂

    Especially as Dwight looks as if he’ll back on first team duty in a game or two’s time.

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  • martoon

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:45 AM

    Comment #39

    Essex Geordie Bill @38 – I’ve noticed that the mean/modes I posted this morning are probable going to be quite close and could well be the winner 😀

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  • Wayayman

    Mar 3, 2017 at 11:54 AM

    Comment #40

    I thing Mitro is nailed-on to start tomorrow. Playing against high tempo teams who press from the front means having a big target man who can hold the ball up is vital. It’s an effective tactic against teams like Huddersfield as it allows our midfield to get up the pitch. I think we’ll see Perez playing off Mitro, Ritchi and Atsu out wide with Diame alongside Shelvey. Rest of team picks itself I guess.

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