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Opinion

Rafa Benitez can now play this Newcastle team v Burnley due to Dummett injury

9 months ago
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Sometimes the best changes in football are those that are forced, rather than chosen.

Whilst Newcastle played better against Bournemouth and deserved to win, fair to say that before that match the Magpies had been pretty shocking going forward, with the exception of the first half at Old Trafford.

With nine days to go, supporters are wondering about the Newcastle team v Burnley.

The biggest topic of conversation since last Saturday’s victory had been about what Rafa Benitez would do if Jamaal Lascelles is fully fit.

Federico Fernandez is obviously first choice after being consistently NUFC’s best defender all season but a potential dilemma between bringing Lascelles straight back in if fit, or sticking with Fabian Schar.

The Swiss international replaced Lascelles halfway through the Watford match and did really well, good in defence and helping Newcastle play it out from the back, The former Deportivo defender then following that up with an excellent game against Bournemouth.

However, team selection for this next crucial game looks to have been turned on its head, with Paul Dummett set to miss after Wales sent him home early after injury v Denmark.

Typical luck for Rafa considering it was Dummett’s first ever start for Wales, plus of course he has no natural decent quality alternative left-back.

However, sad though it is to see any Newcastle player pick up an injury, just maybe it might have done Rafa Benitez a favour.

Solving another selection headache AND potentially getting this Newcastle team playing better football, as well as increasing the chances of a positive result at Burnley.

I think that if Paul Dummett is ruled out through injury, then it means Rafa would be guilt free in terms of playing all three of Lascelles, Fernandez and Schar.

This is how the Newcastle team v Burnley could look:

newcastle team v burnley

The likes of Yedlin and Kenedy are obviously better going forwards than backwards, so this could be ideal, this pair of wing-backs able to attack knowing they have the three centre-backs/defenders behind them.

Some people would maybe even go a step further and add in Shelvey (if fit) instead of Ayoze Perez to play in the next match.

With Salomon Rondon playing, it means at last Newcastle have a target man who is strong enough to hold the ball up and bring the midfielders into play.

There are no guarantees of course but I think this team selection and formation could really lift Newcastle’s game in the absence of Dummett.

A win at Burnley would be huge.
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