According to The Chronicle, Achraf Lazaar has now been handed a squad number by Rafa Benitez – with the Moroccan set to play for the U-23’s tonight in an attempt to stake his claim for a first-team return.
Despite our clear efforts to shift him over the summer, Lazaar has been registered as part of our Premier League squad, and he’s set to make his comeback tonight.
The U-23’s have lost their last four on the spin and play Fulham at Whitley Park, and Benitez may well be in attendance to see the 26-year old in action.
— Lee Ryder (@lee_ryder) October 1, 2018
With Dummett missing the Leicester defeat though injury and Javier Manquillo a right sided full-back, Lazaar is our only natural left-back that’s currently fit – with Kenedy being forced to play in a deeper role on Saturday as a result.
Given how poor he was during a loan spell at Benevento, coupled with the fact he’s still not training with the first team, I can’t see a way back for Lazaar – although he may just come back into Benitez’s plans if he can impress tonight.