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Rafa Soon To Have Seven New Players To Choose From

There’s good news in the Chronicle today that Mo Diame, Paul Dummett and Ki Sung-yueng should be fit for our next test at Wolves next Monday night.

Wolves are in good form and that will be a difficult game but we have a decent chance of getting all 3 points if we play as well as we have in the last three league games.

And Yoshinori Muto will be returning from the Asian Cup where the Newcastle forward helped Japan reach the final, but they were beaten 3-1 by Qatar last Friday.

And when you think we have just signed Miguel Almiron and Antonio Barreca last month, there are six new players for Rafa to choose from.

That becomes six when Jonjo Shelvey finally comes back from his thigh injury – so the Newcastle team can be transformed in say a couple of weeks.

New in the sense that most of them have not been available for some time.

Rafa Benitez – in training
Could have 7 new players to choose from for the Huddersfield game

Here’s what Rafa has said in the Chronicle today:

“I think Diame (hip), Ki (hamstring) and Dummett (hamstring) are quite close, more so than Jonjo”

“We will see but the others are quite close, so hopefully they will be available against Wolves.”

Here are the upcoming fixtures:

Mon 11 Feb   Wolves vs Newcastle            8:00pm
Sat 23 Feb   Newcastle vs Huddersfield      3:00pm
Wed 27 Feb   Newcastle vs Burnley           8:00pm
Sat 02 Mar   West Ham vs Newcastle          5:30pm
Sat 09 Mar   Newcastle vs Everton           3:00pm
Sat 02 Mar   Bournemouth  vs Newcastle      3:00pm 

We have to be in with a decent chance of winning all those games – especially if Almiron and Barreca have an immediate impact.

Even through Dummett is fit again we’ll probably see Barreca as the left wing-back at Wolves and Matt Ritchie can be moved forward on one of the wings.

Rafa has to give the Italian some game-time to see how good he is and whether the manager should sign the 23-year-old permanently in the summer.

Hopefully, in the next six games, we can get a few wins.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

15 comments so far

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Feb 4, 2019 at 2:58 PM

    Comment #1

    I wouldn’t say in the next few games that Dummett and Diame are really going to add anything to our team we need to be more attacking and have a bit more movement in midfield

    Hayden and Longstaff should be good to go against Wolves who have a really mobile midfield not the type of game for someone coming back from injury to start against!

    Could see Ki being brought in for Hayden against Huddersfield and Burnley where we really need the creativity for the win

  • Bambams

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:02 PM

    Comment #2

    I think we will get a result at Wolves.

  • Bambams

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:02 PM

    Comment #3

    A positive one…

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:07 PM

    Comment #4


    I actually think we would have got at least a draw against them at St James’s if Yedlin hadn’t got sent off!

    We also should have had a penalty when it 1 each for Boly’s elbow on Perez so could have been 2 – 1 ahead and down to 10 men each….

    Wolves are actually really good playing the bigger teams but they struggle when teams make it difficult for them which we will certainly do!

  • Ricardo74

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:07 PM

    Comment #5

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1NeD1MVkBn0 Atlanta fans talking about Almiron good watch. Sorry if it has already been shared.

  • RobLeenio

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:09 PM

    Comment #6

    Lol Bambams, nice clarification. I agree though – I think we could have got a result before the new signings, our chances are only increased now.

    Apparently Nuno has them away in Spain. It’s been a while since we heard of footballers shinning down drainpipes, getting p!ssed in town and stealing a cab to get back to the hotel. Overdue, I’d say. Jib, if you’re anywhere near them, maybe you should encourage them a bit….

  • Bambams

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:15 PM

    Comment #7

    Is Almiron available to play, I heard he is off to get work permit.

  • Mag52

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:16 PM

    Comment #8

    I think Almiron could come on with twenty or so minutes to go v Wolves to give him a taster of the PL.
    The half chance Perez had in the second half v Spuds was a good example of a player costing a few million missing an opportunity to score that a player with more skill and ability ( and costing, no doubt, a few tens of millions) would have gobbled up.

  • R.I.P Magpie

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:18 PM

    Comment #9

    It would be awesome if we won 2-0 and Ronnie and Almiron scores, Ronnie has started to show when fit how much of a striker he is, if Almiron can add to this attack then I can see teams thinking, shite Newcastle have some serious attacking options now and we need to set up different.
    These next six games will either make or break our season. Four wins and a draw would see us at 37 points which I feel would make us safe.

  • RobLeenio

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:19 PM

    Comment #10

    Ricardo, never apologise matey – that’s a cool interview with some guys who know their stuff. “Newcastle Magpies” grates slightly. Their enthusiasm over Almiron does not.

    Interestingly, they know NUFC from the entertainers era and they think Almiron is ideally suited to NUFC specifically and they big up Rafa’s role in bringing him in.

    Loved it when they said Atlanta United could beat Sunderland. Of course they could, my son’s team could beat Sunderland and they’re pap!


  • Ron Knee

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:51 PM

    Comment #11

    “A 17-year-old who ‘couldn’t find Spain on a map’ walked across the Pyrenees to join the Spanish civil war’s freedom fighters. Folk trio the Young’uns explain how Johnny Longstaff’s extraordinary life inspired their latest album.” (Grauniad)

    He was born in Stockton. Any relation, I wonder.

  • hibbit

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:54 PM

    Comment #12

    people are glossing over the cracks,
    an injury to Rondon would be a major problem, Almiron has not played since 8/12/18, no work permit yet so not even allowed to train.
    its a big ask of him ,i honestly don’t know if he’s a a world beater or not but the lad is going to need a little time, we’ll be very lucky if he’s kept his fitness up over that long period and hits the ground running,
    the knockers are waiting in the wings if he doesn’t !!!!!

  • carltoon

    Feb 4, 2019 at 4:34 PM

    Comment #13

    We’ve bought one player hoping he’s going to be a world beater. No pressure on the lad.

  • Geordie-john

    Feb 5, 2019 at 9:47 AM

    Comment #14

    He had it coming !

    Nice to hear that Fat Lad has lost out on HMV !
    Anymore good news today would be very welcome LOL !!!!!!!!

  • Geordie-john

    Feb 5, 2019 at 10:00 AM

    Comment #15

    Feb 4, 2019 at 3:54 PM
    Comment #12

    Remember a certain Tino Asprilla ? He came on second half and made a hell of a difference. He wasn’t fit, No where near.
    Almiron looks a fast fit lad and I’m sure his fitness isn’t too far away. Time will tell ! Give him a chance.
    I also think that Ayoze will play well off Almiron. He’s quicker than Rondom and has scored some tasty goals in the past with little flicks.
    The main thing is we will be an attacking team again.


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