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Jeff Hendrick set to be unavailable to start in first Newcastle United game of the season

9 months ago

There has been no explanation as to why the free transfer signing of Jeff Hendrick took so long to get over the line.

The last few weeks seeing the media keep reporting the signing as imminent, only for it finally to go through on Monday, 29 days into the transfer window.

This long delay looks to have prevented any chance of Jeff Hendrick being available to start the opening match of the season.

It is now almost six months since the midfielder last played, whilst he has had no pre-season so far.

Hendrick only joined up with the Newcastle squad yesterday and now has a week at the very most before heading off on international duty.

The crazy football schedule for the coming season, means that international squads are playing games only days before the Premier League season kicks off.

Understandably, Jeff Hendrick will be looking to impress Stephen Kenny after he picked his first Republic of Ireland squad.

The now NUFC midfielder teammate will be joining up a number of days in advance of the Republic playing in Sofia against Bulgaria on Thursday 3 September, before then they face Finland in Dublin on Sunday 6 September.

Jeff Hendrick will then only have a few days training with his Newcastle teammates before the opening match against West Ham in two and a half weeks time.

So even if he wanted to and Jeff Hendrick was fit enough to do himself justice after over six months without any first team club football, a lack of sufficient preparation time will surely mean Bruce won’t risk using the free transfer signing.

In fact, it is now looking increasingly odds on, that no new players will be in the starting eleven when the Magpies face the Hammers in two and a half weeks time.

With Mike Ashley apparently restricting transfer business to a bare minimum, with frees and loans at the heart of it, only Hendrick and new third choice keeper Mark Gillespie have been signed so far.

Even if other signings are made, the clock is rapidly ticking down for them having any chance of featuring from the start of the season.

Meaning we are looking at the same NUFC Head Coach and same players who ended the season with the third worst form in the Premier League over the final twenty matches, only four PL wins since Christmas 2019.

Meanwhile, no sign of Joelinton this past week at the club’s pre-season training camp near York, the £40m+ signing conspicuous by his absence from the photo galleries released by the club.


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