Jonjo Shelvey has been struggling with a thigh problem for over two months now.
When he’s in training, it seems OK, but after the FA Cup game against Blackburn 10 days ago, he was feeling the thigh.
The club sent him off to see a specialist in Barcelona last week, and he’s not fit for tonight’s replay at Blackburn.
Jonjo is also attracting interest from both Fulham and West Ham, but Rafa is not willing to let the player he signed at Liverpool leave the club.
Jonjo Shelvey – Fulham and West Ham interested
Rafa was asked if he would rule out Shelvey leaving the club and this is what he has said in the Mirror today:
“Yes. The idea is to keep as much as we can.”
“We are just checking on his fitness. The problem with Jonjo is Jonjo was pushing to play.”
“That is positive in one way, negative because he was feeling it a little bit.”
“So he played in the FA Cup and after the game, he was feeling his thigh.”
“It’s a pity. I was talking with him before the game saying I want to protect him. He said he was fine and he was training and he was fine.”
Newcastle are short of central midfielders at the moment.
Our best three midfielders – Ki, Diame, and Shelvey – are not available with the latter two injured and Ki playing for South Korea in the Asian Cup.
Longstaff and Hayden will probably continue in the team for the replay tonight at Ewood Park.
We hope we can win this game, but our hopes are not high.