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Opinion

Preferred Newcastle team v Tottenham to start new owners era off with a win

1 month ago
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The Newcastle team v Tottenham for tomorrow’s landmark game, my suggested side for this massive match to kick-off this new era.

With everything that’s happened in the past week or so at Newcastle United, some people may have actually forgotten that we still have some games of football to play.

No surprise really as easy for fans to be distracted amidst the whirlwind of speculation and fantasy elevens of the future.

Obviously we now know Steve Bruce will still be there, doing his best to cling on for as long as possible.

However, on a positive note, he is joined by several key returning players.

Callum Wilson has obviously been a huge miss for us and it will be nice to only be reliant on two players for goals rather than just the one.

Whilst Shelvey coming back might give us some better passing range in the midfield, something that has been sorely lacking from us this season.

Injury worries for Willock and Lascelles have also cleared, with our only likely unavailable absentees for the starting eleven being Dubravka (game coming too soon), Dummett (persistently injured) and most likely Almiron (Bruce ruling him out because he won’t get back into the UK until Saturday).

From the sounds of things, Spurs are having tremendous difficulties, with four players arriving back late from internationals, along with new covid cases – making it very difficult to predict the squad we’re actually going to be facing.

Any Tottenham absentees can only be a positive for Newcastle though, with the improved atmosphere and a full stadium hopefully giving the players the lift they’re needing.

With that all said, here is the Newcastle team v Tottenham that I would select, lining up in a 4-2-3-1 formation:

Goalkeeper – Darlow

Pretty much a toss up here, as Darlow was shocking against Wolves last time out, conceding two identical goals and looking really sluggish.

However, he had some great performances last season between the sticks for us, and Woodman hasn’t looked amazing in his few games, along with just recovering from an injury himself. Hopefully Dubravka is fit for next time…

Full backs – Manquillo and Lewis

I’m going for Lewis at left back for his defensive abilities and Manquillo has been solid all season so far.

Centre backs  – Lascelles and Schar

Still the best two we have in my opinion.

Schar bringing an ability to pass out from the back that I think we really lack when Clark / Fernandez are playing.

Midfield five – Shelvey and Hayden (defensive) / Willock, ASM and Fraser (offensive)

In the anchor roles, I’d have Shelvey to play out and add some passing range, with Hayden to screen / potentially drop into the defence when under pressure.

I think this would leave us with a more secure midfield where everyone knows their role, rather than the confusion we’ve seen lately.

In the offensive positions, I’d have Willock in the CAM role, with Fraser and ASM on the wings, with the ability to switch if needed. Giving ASM more freedom can only be a good thing and hopefully will allow him to continue his great early season form.

Striker – Wilson

We really don’t have much of a choice but to chuck him right back in it, do we?

Hopefully a back up striker is one of the first things on the new owners’ transfer wish list, otherwise we’re going to be just fearing the next inevitable long lay-off. Hopefully he can last through to Xmas.

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