Earlier today, it was announced that goalkeeper Martin Dubravka had suffered a knee injury that will keep him out of action for at least the rest of the month.
Though, there was another report that claimed Martin could miss six to eight weeks with his injury.
Dubravka has spoken to nufc.co.uk about the injury, which is his first significant one since joining Newcastle from Sparta Prague over two years ago.
This is what the 31-year-old had to say about missing some games in the coming weeks:
“Obviously I’m not happy, but that’s part of football. Sometimes you get injured and you can’t do much.
“I’m trying to stay positive and calm and trying to get ready as soon as possible, but hopefully, I can be back soon.”
The hope is that Martin will only miss the two remaining games this month. They are this Saturday’s home match against Sheffield United and the FA Cup quarter-final a week later against Manchester City, which is also at St James Park.
Martin went on to express confidence in both Karl Darlow and Rob Elliot to keep the goalkeeping performances at a high level in his absence:
“I was trying to be ready for every game, even if I had small injuries before with my back or with whatever. The people who know me know I want to play every time, even if I’m not 100 per cent.
“Obviously, this is bigger than that, so I can’t play this (Sheffield United) game, but I’m quite confident that my teammates, whether it’s Karl or Rob, will definitely play very well. Now I’m going to support them from the stands.
“They show it on the pitch – Karl has shown it in the cup games – so I’m definitely confident and comfortable with whichever of the keepers will be in goal. I’m going to support them because they provide fantastic support for me as well.
“It means a lot because even Karl came to me the next day and asked how it was. You don’t have that connection always, and I’ve said many times, I’m very grateful for that.
“Obviously, this is a chance for them now but it’s good because we are still not safe, and I’m quite sure that they will show their ability and show their levels.”
Both Darlow and Elliot have had very few chances to play for Newcastle since Dubravka arrived. Martin has started 79 straight league games since his debut against Manchester United in February of 2018.
Darlow and Elliot split time before the Slovakian was brought in. Karl started just 10 Premier League matches and 2 cup ties in our season after our promotion from the Championship.
Elliot began that season as our number one starting the first 13 games. He ultimately finished that campaign with 16 starts, all in the league.
We expect Darlow to get the nod in Dubravka’s absence with Elliot as the backup. Both players are on contracts due to expire this summer, though Karl may have an extra year according to the Shields Gazette’s Miles Starforth.
Update: Understand that Karl Darlow is under contract until 2021. Newcastle never disclosed his original contract length (and club has not revealed any extension) but it had been widely reported that his contract expired this summer. #nufc
— Miles Starforth (@milesstarforth) March 6, 2020
We have faith that both players can get the job done if called upon. While they may not be at the level of Dubravka, Darlow and Elliot have been outstanding servants to the club.