It has been confirmed today that Captain Colo will indeed be sidelined for Sunday’s clash with Sunderland. The skipper missed Saturday’s draw with Liverpool after sustaining an injury whilst away on International duty.
Colocinni was always touch and go for the derby, but the confirmed loss of the Argentinian is a big blow especially since we know Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa is unavailable following his red card on Saturday. Presumably Mike Williamson will retain his place on Sunday but the loss of Mbiwa and Colo will force Alan Pardew to once again tinker with his defense.
Steven Taylor has been unavailable since the opening weekend loss to Manchester City, firstly he stupidly got sent off in said fixture which resulted in a three match ban. Steven has since suffered a hamstring injury in training which has kept him out of contention in recent weeks. Pardew is confident that former England under 21 Captain will be fit for the Wear-Tyne derby, seemingly though the Newcastle Manager is happy enough to use youngster Paul Dummett if required.
Pardew: “We think Steven’s going to be OK.
“He was touch and go to train last week, but we just held him back.
“He did some extra work. We don’t really see a problem, and hopefully we don’t, but if not, we’ve got a new hero in Paul Dummett.”
Dummett was brought on following Mbiwa’s red card on Saturday. Not only did the youngster look comfortable at center half, he also got his name on the score sheet and temporarily put Newcastle ahead for a second time in the game. Paul did incredibly well in a position that’s maybe slightly alien to him with the lad traditionally more comfortable at left back. It could be if Taylor can’t prove his fitness ahead of the game that Dummett may be asked to start at the heart of defence alongside Williamson.
The game on Sunday will be Newcastle’s first shot at redemption following the humiliating home defeat last season. Last season’s events at St James’ Park probably keeps Alan Pardew awake at night and to be honest it should. That performance was beyond unacceptable and the team simply didn’t turn up that afternoon. The last thing we want to do is gift Sunderland with more bragging rights.
Steven Taylor does typify what this fixture means, he is very vocal, passionate and he seemingly winds up the Sunderland fans on a regular basis- stamp collecting anyone?! You know he will be pumped up for the game and will want to right the wrongs of last season. With this said, Steven hasn’t played competitively in weeks and his match fitness will be debatable although there is no doubt he will be desperate to be selected.
If Steven is fit would you start him automatically or would you reward Dummett’s starring role on Saturday and give him a chance to start in such a huge game? Let’s not forget it’s a huge occasion and the atmosphere will be rather vicious. Would it be too much to soon? Personally I think if Taylor is fit he should start given the situation with injuries and suspensions.
I think Paul Dummett has a big future at this club, I hope he doesn’t follow in the same direction as Paul Huntington or David Edgar who eventually fell into obscurity. What’s your team for Sunday (assuming Taylor is fit).