Newcastle U-23 Ludwig Francillette is ‘in contention’ to play in next week’s FA Cup clash with Rochdale, according to the Chronicle.
After last weekend’s 1-1 draw at Spotland forced a replay, we’re set to take on the League One side at St James’ Park next Tuesday – and it’s claimed the 6ft 4′ Frenchman could be handed his big chance by Steve Bruce.
As we reported yesterday, the 20-year-old centre-back has been pictured training with the first-team this week, and The Chronicle have since revealed that Bruce is ‘taking a close look’ at the defender ahead of next week’s replay.
Francillette – who was signed up to our U-23 set up over the summer – travelled with the squad for last Saturday’s game, but did not make Bruce’s 18-man squad, with fellow youngsters Lewis Cass, Thomas Allan and Elias Sorensen being named on the bench instead.
It sounds like he could make the cut this time around, however, and it would be no surprise if Bruce rotated, with next week’s game set to fall in between Premier League clashes with Wolves (11th Jan) and Chelsea (18th Jan).
Our injury crisis at centre-back is easing, with Paul Dummett and Ciaran Clark back in training this week, but with Schar injured, Lascelles still on the road to recovery and Lejeune in need of a rest, it could be the perfect time to give one of our U-23’s a rare run out.