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NUFC team based on 11 Newcastle United players to play most minutes in pre-season friendlies

2 months ago
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With only two weeks to go until Newcastle host West Ham, interesting to see how many minutes on the pitch for each of the Newcastle United players in the pre-season friendlies.

So have the right players got the right number of minutes this summer?

Newcastle have played York, Doncaster, Rotherham and Burton with a maximum of 360 minutes available for each player (ignoring injuries etc), with only the home friendly against Norwich still to come ahead of the serious stuff.

These are the eleven highest:

300 Hayden

297 Murphy

262 Sean Longstaff

257 Hendrick

247 Lewis

242 Fernandez

233 Fraser

228 Ritchie

199 Gayle

198 Lascelles

180 Langley (Wilson has 181 minutes but 10 other outfield players higher, so had to include a keeper)

With not a single new signing, at the moment all the answers for the new season have to come from this existing group of players.

Looking at the Newcastle United players above, I’m guessing nine of the outfield players are set to start against West Ham in two weeks time. Gayle the exception, though if Callum Wilson’s hamstring injury that kept him out Friday’s game at Burton doesn’t improve, then that could all change.

The 20 year old keeper Dan Langley got two full games (180 minutes) with all four senior keepers ruled out, but the last two friendlies have seen Woodman and Gillespie equalling sharing duties. So with 90 minutes each behind them, whoever starts against Norwich will surely be the choice against West Ham.

The other 16 Newcastle United players (who have also played minutes, plus those yet to play at all):

181 Wilson

157 Watts

136 Dummett

110 Saint-Maximin

94 Clark

90 Woodman

90 Gillespie

90 Matty Longstaff

89 Schar

89 Krafth

71 Joelinton

50 White

34 Young

18 Allan

11 Muto

6 Bondswell

0 Dubravka

0 Darlow

0 Shelvey

0 Anderson

0 Almiron

0 Manquillo

Dubravka, Darlow, Shelvey, Manquillo and Anderson are all still out injured and having not played a single minute so far, are surely not going to be ready for the Hammers in a fortnight’s time.

Steve Bruce stated Miguel Almiron is back on Tyneside this weekend but surely the odds very much against him getting in a position fitness-wise where he’d be in contention for that first Premier League match.

Additional injury / fitness worries that we know after Friday’s win at Burton, are Wilson (hamstring), ASM (‘illness’), and Dummett (calf).

In an ideal world, Dubravka would be nailed on to start the season having featured heavily in the friendlies, the same with Newcastle’s other two quality players – ASM and Wilson. Joe Willock would have been signed early in the window and along with another couple of creative / goalscoring new signings would be primed to start the season.

However, supporting Newcastle United under this Mike Ashley appalling reign is rarely, if ever, ideal.

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