The Magpies could be hard-pressed to name a full matchday squad for the game with Sunderland, but Mick Quinn has told the Chronicle that they should not be looking at using one highly-rated youngster.
The likes of Lubo Satka, Olivier Kemen and Tom Heardman could be named on the substitutes’ bench, or even as starters if John Carver’s squad gets hit with any more injuries.
However, it is Adam Armstrong who has been making the biggest splash at youth level, with the 18-year-old scoring seven in nine games at Under-21 level. Currently on international duty with England’s Under-18s, the striker scored three goals in two games - as well as being named captain for the Young Lions in the second game.
On a great run of form, Carver could be tempted to utilise the youngster to revitalise his lagging and injury-hit squad, and the derby could be a great time to bring him in. The Magpies have got to end their dreadful run of form against their North East rivals, and Armstrong would likely be more motivated to find the back of the net against Sunderland, being a local boy from Tyneside.
However, Newcastle legend Quinn is keen to see Armstrong left out of the starting XI, leaving him as an option from the bench instead.
Speaking to the Chronicle, Quinn said: “There will be a clamour to start him [Armstrong] in the derby, He’s a local lad, is playing well and is the one Newcastle player scoring goals, albeit at youth level.
“But I wouldn’t be tempted. Not this time. I can see it being a really fiery game, which is no place for such a young lad. We need experience out there, even if those player have let us down in the derby before, and have Armstrong has an excellent alternative late in the game.
“I like a punt, but starting with him would be a punt too far even for me.”