Jamaal Lascelles admits the ‘smart’ and ‘physical’ Aleksandar Mitrovic can be a ‘nightmare’ to deal with – but he’s hoping to do a job on him when the big Serbian returns to St James’ Park this weekend.
As we all know, Mitrovic made a big money move to Fulham over the summer, with several fans heavily criticising Benitez’s decision to cash in on the striker.
He’s scored 7 goals so far this season, however it’s fair to say West Brom loanee Salomon Rondon has outshone him in recent months – with the Venezuelan bagging 4 goals and 2 assists in our last 6.
Here’s what Lascelles has had to say about Fulham and Aleksandar Mitrovic when speaking to NUFC TV this week:
“Fulham are bottom but they have got some good players, obviously Mitro is a good striker and a good midfield.
“Mitro’s a good striker: he’s smart, he is physical, he can be a nightmare for centre-backs, but we are all paid to do our jobs.“
“We just want to make sure we play in the right way, the right attitude.”
It will certainly be an interesting battle between Lascelles and Mitrovic, with both being big 6ft 2′ fifteen stone footballers who excel in dominating their opponent.
That said, with Fernandez back in training, Schar playing a big role in recent home games and Clark performing well of late, Lascelles may yet miss out.
Here’s what else the skipper’s had to say ahead of the game, with him reflecting on our big win at Huddersfield and our unacceptable home defeat to Wolves:
“The Wolves game wasn’t good enough.
“We knew going to Huddersfield was going to be a hard game, a massive game for us, getting a clean sheet and a win was really important.
“Gives us momentum heading in the right direction again.
“We have got a lot of games coming up and all about building momentum and keeping it going.
“I was pleased with the boys, they did really well, worked hard all game.
“Huddersfield did have a lot of possession but in terms of chances created, they didn’t really do much of that.
“Everybody was putting their body on the line.
“The Huddersfield win was massive at this time of year and a little gap forming.
“All about keeping our heads down and trying to do the same thing (against Fulham).
“Last season we turned it around January/February time because we were real far down the bottom, we managed to turn it around real quick.
“We are not in that situation that we were in last year.
“Hopefully can get a good win for the (Newcastle) fans because they deserve it.
“At times I do feel sorry for them (Newcastle supporters) but that’s football.”
Big game on Saturday.
If he starts, let’s hope Lascelles is much better than he was in his last appearance at St James’ Park. He may need to be to keep Mitrovic out.