There was an interesting passage as part of Newcastle’s released images from Thursday’s training session. It mentioned that Dwight Gayle was pushing for a start against Crystal Palace, the club from which he joined Newcastle in 2016.
Dwight Gayle is pushing for a start against his former club, but Jamaal Lascelles, Matt Ritchie, and Allan Saint-Maximin will definitely miss out due to injury.
Dwight has not started for Newcastle since the final match of the 2018 season, which we defeated Chelsea 3-0 at St James Park. That match was also the last game for Dwight to score in while donning a Newcastle shirt.
He was our number 9 then but a year and a half on, he’s a peripheral figure at this club. He’s played just 62 minutes in a handful of substitute appearances this term.
He had a golden chance to get back on track last week against Burnley but pushed a Joelinton cross wide. That chance could have made all the difference for the 29-year-old.
Steve Bruce was asked during his press conference if he still thinks Gayle is an important player for this team. This was Bruce’s response:
“I’ve had many conversations about Dwight. I’m sure the one thing he’ll want is a chance. So far, he’s only come on as a sub a couple of times. Of course, a lot of that was due to injury.
“I’ve said many times he’s an important part. If we’re gonna go forward, we’re gonna need three or four strikers.
“I don’t know how many times I’ve said it about Dwight Gayle, but I’ve always, always thought highly of him. I think I’ve tried to buy him three times. I could never quite afford him.
“I hope he stays. I honestly hope that he will get his chance sooner rather than later. When he gets it, I hope he takes it.”
Maybe Bruce will shock us and give Gayle a start tomorrow but we just don’t see it happening. Even though Bruce insists that he hopes Gayle will stay. His stance seems to have softened a bit.
It’s likely to be Andy Carroll up front tomorrow with Miguel Almiron on the right and either Christian Atsu or Joelinton on the left. Gayle is still waiting to get more opportunities. If he gets one tomorrow, he needs to take it.
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