Steve Bruce has confirmed that Ryan Fraser is a major doubt for Newcastle United’s midweek clash with Crystal Palace, but star forward Allan Saint-Maximin could start.
The Toon are looking to build on their first win in 12 games across all competitions after beating Everton 2-0 on Saturday, against an Eagles side fresh off a 1-0 victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers.
United will move to within a point of Palace with a win on Tuesday night, and pull 11 points clear of the relegation zone before Fulham host fourth-placed Leicester City on Wednesday.
So, with Bruce considering changes from the XI which won at Goodison Park, here’s a potential line-up the Newcastle boss could name…
Bruce has confirmed that Fraser is a major doubt for Newcastle’s Tuesday night affair with Crystal Palace, after the ex-AFC Bournemouth winger reported to the club’s doctor that he was sick following United’s win at Everton.
The Toon do not believe the 26-year-old’s symptoms are Covid-related, though come as the latest blow for Fraser following hamstring and suspension issues this season.
Fraser could be replaced in the starting line-up by Saint-Maximin, who missed two months after testing positive for coronavirus, after the Frenchman played 68 minutes in the Magpies’ last three Premier League fixtures.
“He’s had three substitute appearances and we think he could be ready for to start,” Bruce said.
Newcastle will also be without captain Jamaal Lascelles against Roy Hodgson’s Eagles, after the centre-back was forced off at half-time against Everton with a hamstring injury.
The 27-year-old will be expected to be replaced by Ciaran Clark in the starting line-up, after the Republic of Ireland international made his return from injury to replace Lascelles at Goodison Park before helping Karl Darlow keep a clean sheet beside Fabian Schar.
Jamal Lewis enjoyed one of his best performances in black and white since joining the Toon from Norwich City to leave fans drooling during Saturday’s win, having previously been hammered for his efforts that left Bruce searching for cover at full-back in the winter transfer window.
Callum Wilson will once again lead the line for Newcastle when they host Crystal Palace following his brace against Everton, and will be supported by Miguel Almiron after the Paraguayan pulled the strings at Goodison Park.
Jeff Hendrick endured yet another torrid day when United won on Merseyside and could be replaced in the starting line-up, allowing for £3m-rated Jacob Murphy to feature on the right with Deadline Day loan signing Joe Willock ineligible to feature on Tuesday.
Isaac Hayden and Jonjo Shelvey will be expected to take control of the engine room, while Javier Manquillo retains honours at right-back having taken over from Murphy against Everton.