Carver praised De Jong in the Chronicle, calling his work in the reserve matches ‘great’ and especially highlighted a pass he made to Adam Armstrong.
“Some of his play in the reserves was great,” the head coach said. “He played a great ball through for Adam Armstrong which only he could see.”
With this work being utilised so well on the training ground and during reserve fixtures, the question arises of why doesn’t Carver now bring the duo into first-team action.
De Jong looks to be back at full fitness, and his inclusion could bring a creative spark to the Magpies that has been lacking for much of the campaign. His playmaking skills have been absent, and it is clear that Newcastle have suffered without that creative force in the final third.
Similarly, the Magpies have suffered in front of goal, with Ayoze Perez the only real star to come out of the season with a positive reputation.
Whilst he continues to struggle as a lone forward, there is Armstrong available for selection, who is impressive every week for the Under-21’s, but is being restricted to substitute appearances for the first-team.
The duo have worked together at reserve level, and will likely have an understanding that the senior members of the Newcastle squad do not have, due to a number of injuries and suspensions causing frequent selection issues in the first-team.
All in all, the duo could not be any worse than their senior counterparts, and there is a fairly huge chance that De Jong will become the missing piece behind Newcastle’s attacking success upon his return.
De Jong is back from injury, and Armstrong is raring to go, and Carver could do much worse than look at the reserve duo to lead his team to a vital three points in the coming weeks.