Newcastle suffering from too little rotation not too much
Rotation of the Newcastle United first team has been put forward this season as a reason for when things go wrong.
With seven defeats already, three more than in the entire last promotion season, chopping and changing the team has been seen as a possible cause for the negative results.
With three defeats in the last eight Championship games (four in nine when including Hull in the cup), Newcastle fans increasingly look for answers and solutions.
Rather than too much rotation being a problem, I think too little rotation this season has been a major negative.
We are all told that this is the strongest squad the Championship has ever seen, so why not use it?
The reality is that rotation this season has been pretty much limited to three positions/combinations.
Yedlin or Anita at right-back, Colback or Hayden alongside Shelvey, Diame or Perez behind Gayle.
Christian Atsu has ended up with half a dozen starts but his main role has been off the bench.
These recent Championship matches (in order) line-ups below, back-up how it the same limited changes that are ever made and indeed this extends to who comes off the bench most of the time, usually the players who have been ‘rotated’.
Not suggesting wholesale changes but I think there is mileage in mixing it up a lot more, especially when you consider how few chances some of the squad have had..
Lazaar (0 Championship starts), Hanley (1 start), Mitrovic (4 starts), Murphy (0 starts) and Atsu (6 starts).
Forest 2 Newcastle 1 (2 December 2016)
Darlow, Yedlin, Clark, Lascelles, Dummett, Hayden, Shelvey, Ritchie, Gouffran (Diame 77), Perez (Anita 46), Gayle (Mitrovic 87)
Newcastle 4 Birmingham 0 (10 December 2016)
Darlow, Anita, Clark, Lascelles, Dummett, Hayden (Lazaar 82), Shelvey, Ritchie, Gouffran (Atsu 72), Diame, Gayle (Mitrovic 79)
2 Changes: Anita for Yedlin, Diame for Perez
Wigan 0 Newcastle 2 (14 December 2016)
Darlow, Anita, Clark, Lascelles, Dummett, Hayden, Shelvey, Ritchie (Atsu 69), Gouffran, Diame, Gayle (Perez 82)
Burton 1 Newcastle 2 (17 December 2016)
Darlow, Yedlin, Clark, Lascelles, Dummett, Hayden, Shelvey, Ritchie (Gouffran 85), Atsu, Diame, Gayle
2 Changes: Yedlin for Anita, Atsu for Gouffran
Newcastle 0 Sheff Wed 1 (26 December 2016)
Darlow, Anita, Clark, Lascelles, Dummett, Hayden, Colback (Mitrovic 80), Ritchie, Gouffran (Atsu 62), Diame (Perez 69), Gayle
3 Changes: Anita for Yedlin, Colback for Shelvey, Gouffran for Atsu
Newcastle 3 Forest 1 (30 December 2016)
Darlow, Yedlin, Clark, Lascelles, Dummett, Hayden, Colback (Diame 67), Ritchie (Lazaar 83), Atsu, Perez, Gayle (Mitrovic 88)
3 Changes: Yedlin for Anita, Atsu for Gouffran, Perez for Diame
Blackburn 1 Newcastle 0 (2 January 2017)
Darlow, Anita (Murpy 87), Clark, Lascelles, Dummett, Hayden, Colback (Perez 77), Ritchie, Gouffran (Atsu 85), Diame, Gayle
3 Changes: Anita for Yedlin, Gouffran for Atsu, Diame for Perez
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