Steve McClaren has insisted that both Siem de Jong and Georginio Wijnaldum can play in the same Newcastle team.
The United boss saying that when de Jong came on against Borussia Monchengladbach that it showed the pair could be accommodated in the side.
It had been noticeable that until Saturday the two of them had never been on the pitch together, the recent pattern in games seeing de Jong a regular late substitute for Wijnaldum.
McClaren says that the two Dutch internationals are both quality players and in reality Newcastle’s riches aren’t such that they can afford to leave out their best players.
The more pressing problem appears to be getting Siem de Jong fully fit, with the midfielder looking a lot more effective in these cameos off the bench, rather than when he has started matches.
After two years with so many injury problems it would be a massive lift if de Jong could now show what he did in Holland, the reality though for Sunday is that surely there is no way that he will start against Southampton, whereas you imaging Wijnaldum will be first name on the team sheet.
“They’re two quality players and people are probably wondering, ‘Can they both play in the same team?’, and I think you saw that in the final 20 minutes against Gladbach that yes they can do that.
“Gini can play in any position around the midfield and we are going to look at using other systems too. We want our style of play to bed in, introduce it and become really good at it, that’s what we want to do.”
Are we ready?:
“We have to get the balance right but at the end of the day it is all about the fact that we want to win football matches, we have a certain way and a certain style of trying to do that.
“Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, then you have to find other ways to win and we’re going to learn a lot on Sunday as to exactly where we are, are we ready and what do we need?”