Rafa Benitez’s injury problems go from bad to worse this morning, as three more Newcastle players suffer reported problems following Saturday’s 0-0 draw at Birmingham.
Grant Hanley has pulled out of the Scotland squad today with an ankle injury, with Rob Elliot also being forced to withdraw from the Ireland squad with a knee problem.
And finally, as if it wasn’t bad enough already, The Chronicle’s Lee Ryder confirms this morning that Daryl Murphy has a calf complaint, which is set to be assessed by the Irish medical team.
Daryl Murphy having a calf injury assessed by Irish medical team #nufc
— Lee Ryder (@lee_ryder) March 20, 2017
This news comes on the back of Ciaran Clark’s withdrawal from the Irish squad, who missed Saturday’s trip to Birmingham. Newcastle will be hoping that the medial knee injury suffered by Clark in the home defeat to Fulham will only be a minor one, seeing him return for next Saturday’s visit of Wigan.
If Clark fails to recover, there is now doubts over his replacement on Saturday, Grant Hanley. Should the Scot also fail to recover in time for Wigan, Newcastle fan’s can expect to see the long awaited return of Chancel Mbemba, who is yet to feature for Newcastle since a home defeat to Blackburn in November.
DeAndre Yedlin also remains a notable absentee, being ruled out for 5 weeks last week with a thigh injury.
On the plus side, Newcastle hope to see Isaac Hayden return in time to face Wigan, with the International break also likely to do wonders for the ill Jonjo Shelvey and out of sorts Dwight Gayle. Paul Dummett and Vurnon Anita look also set to benefit, having played with pain-killing injections over recent matches.
Newcastle will, however, hope that the calf problem reported by Daryl Murphy is just precautionary, with the 34 year-old leading the line well for Benitez’s side in recent weeks.