Much is being made of Newcastle United’s injury list but who are we really missing.
Yes Tim Krul will obviously be a miss now that he is ruled out but other than that?
The player Newcastle have been missing the most, and will still maybe miss even more than the Dutch keeper, isn’t even injured.
Well not proper injured anyway…
That player is Siem de Jong.
The Dutch creative and goalscoring midfielder has been involved in nine of Newcastle’s 10 matchday squads this season.
However, despite playing the full 90 minutes in both League Cup matches, de Jong has only played 86 minutes in the Premier League over the course of five substitute appearances.
With no wins and Newcastle desperate for inspiration and goals, it obviously isn’t out of choice why Siem de Jong is not making the first eleven.
If there was any room for doubt, Yoan Gouffran playing centre of midfield whilst the Dutch international looked on, was the final proof if we ever needed it.
The former Ajax Captain has played less than four hours (233 minutes) of Premier League football since he arrived in summer 2014 and sadly he looks as far off being able to start a Premier League match as he has ever been.
Last season Siem de Jong could have made the difference and this year it is the same.
Whether or not his various injuries/illnesses had already left him incapable of handling the Premier League BEFORE he left Ajax is debatable.
However, 16/17 months and a few more injuries/illnesses later, we are still yet to see any evidence to the contrary.
De Jong did ok in the stroll against League Two Northampton but then so he should even at half pace, though the fact he couldn’t against the higher level of Sheffield Wednesday reserves is a big pointer to where he is at.
A fully functioning Siem de Jong playing in and around Mitrovic and Perez could be a real handful but you have to wonder if we will ever see it now.
The club and player seem to have run out of options in terms of operations and rehabilitation, in terms of trying to get him up to Premier League fitness.
I would love to have seen him bring his skills and experience to Newcastle, as well as captain the side instead of the not fit for purpose Fabricio Coloccini.
A bit like Newcastle United overall, you wonder what next for Siem de Jong.
He could have been a big part of the answer but sadly just looks like yet another piece of the problem at St James Park.
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