Newcastle are back at St. James’ Park tomorrow as the club celebrates the anniversary of the takeover, which happened one year ago today. Brentford will hope to play spoilers on what will hopefully be an afternoon to remember.
Eddie Howe has shaped Newcastle into a formidable force with the aid of our ambitious new owners. He held his press conference this morning for tomorrow’s clash against the Bees.
Howe remarked on the one-year anniversary of the takeover saying the following per Newcastle’s Twitter account:
“The club’s come a long way. That positivity is still there. It’s a difficult thing to keep and everyone behind the scenes has done a very good job in putting the building blocks in place for what the club needs for long term success.”
The head coach provided an update on the injury situation that has plagued the start of this campaign. Despite missing Callum Wilson, Bruno Guimaraes, and Allan Saint-Maximin for stretches, Newcastle are still 7th in the league table.
Of the trio, only Saint-Maximin is yet to return while summer signing Alexander Isak missed last week’s dismantling of Fulham with a thigh injury. Both were not featured in Wednesday’s training images.
That may have been at Howe’s behest. He has confirmed that Allan trained well this week and has a chance of making tomorrow’s squad.
“He’s doing OK. He’s trained well this week and we’re pleased with him. He’s making good progress. There’s a chance he could be in the squad tomorrow.”
Unfortunately, it is too soon for Isak, whose injury is still preventing a return to full training. The Swede is making progress individually but has been ruled out for Brentford.
“He’s running on grass and increasing his speed so he’s in a good place. Hopefully, it won’t be too long.
“He suffered a muscle problem to his thigh and his scan wasn’t overly bad but the medical team are just being cautious with him at this moment.”
Howe also revealed that Jonjo Shelvey is preparing to return to training today. The midfielder has made great strides since undergoing hamstring surgery in pre-season. Here is the update on Shelvey:
“His recovery is going very well. He’s ahead of schedule and he’s hopefully going to be involved with us today in training for the first time. There will still be caution as to when he’s ready to play but he’s making positive strides at the moment.”
Howe could name the same team that destroyed Fulham last weekend. He probably won’t risk Saint-Maximin from the start but could give him a cameo if he passes his fitness test. Isak appears to still be a few weeks away while Jonjo will hopefully be back before the World Cup break.