Rafa Benitez has confirmed that Isaac Hayden, Mo Diame and DeAndre Yedlin all have ‘little problems’ and will face late fitness tests ahead of tomorrow’s game with Crystal Palace.
Hayden was forced off in the second half at Arsenal on Monday, so he was always a doubt, but news of niggles for Diame and Yedlin could mean we see a few changes tomorrow.
Schar is back from a two-game ban as Rafa confirms below, with Jonjo Shelvey now seeming highly likely to start in midfield if both Hayden and Diame do miss out:
“Schär is fine – he is available. Apart from Longstaff, who is not available, we have two or three issues. Hayden, Diamé and Yedlin have some little problems and we have to check on them before the game.”
Rafa then confirmed that Jonjo Shelvey told him he’s ‘ready and wants to play’, but it sounds to me like his involvement from the start will depend if Hayden and/or Diame pass fitness tests tomorrow:
“I was talking to him today – he is telling me he is ready and wants to play. We have to decide, depending on him and the other players. But he loves football and wants to play.”
As for Yedlin, you’d think Manquillo would start in his place if tomorrow does come too soon for the American.
Should all three miss out, what side do you see Rafa going with against Palace?