Newcastle United face a defensive crisis for their encounter with West Bromwich Albion.
Steve McClaren admits that Chancel Mbemba and Paul Dummett won’t be available for tomorrow while Jamaal Lascelles’ suspension leaves Newcastle United short of defensive options, the Shields Gazette report.
The Magpies host Premier League opponents West Bromwich Albion in a must-win game on Saturday, but they will have to make do with a reshuffled back four following a number of injuries.
Updating reporters on the situation, McClaren said they will be informed of the full diagnosis regarding Mbemba’s ankle problem, while it’s a game too soon for Dummett amid a hamstring niggle.
“It's a little niggle. He felt a tightness and we didn't want to take a risk. He's not fit for tomorrow,” McClaren was quoted as saying by the Shields Gazette when asked about Dummett’s situation.
Amid the defensive crisis, there is one piece of good news for Newcastle as Jack Colback nears a return from his hamstring injury, with McClaren adding: “Jack’s very, very close.”
The three defensive absentees leaves Newcastle with a potential problem at the back, and they could be forced into a potential reshuffle either in formation or a midfielder dropping back.
The mounting injuries have come at a bad time for the Tyneside club, and with 14 games remaining they will be hoping to have options to choose from in their bid to beat the drop.
Newcastle head into their clash with West Brom stuck in 18th spot after losing 3-0 to Everton in midweek, two points behind Norwich City and two points ahead of North East rivals Sunderland.
West Brom’s poor form on the road means it’s a great chance for McClaren’s side to get points on the board, and in doing so they could potentially drag the Baggies into the relegation mix.