Newcastle United vs Cardiff City
St James’ Park may be tense on Saturday when Newcastle United take on Cardiff City.
Undoubtedly this match will be dubbed a relegation six-pointer.
Cardiff are fourth bottom of the Premier League with 19 points from 22 matches.
Newcastle are third bottom of the division with 18 points on the board.
Jamaal Lascelles & Ciaran Clark injury updates
Rafa Benitez faces a set of significant injury problems before the Cardiff match.
Will Newcastle’s captain Jamaal Lascelles be fit for the Bluesbirds?
Lascelles is very much a doubt for Saturday after he needed to be subbed after just 12 minutes of action on Tuesday in the FA Cup replay against Blackburn.
Lascelles came on at the break for the injured Ciaran Clark.
Yet, less than 120 seconds after entering the fray, Lascelles pulled up with his own injury.
Despite that fact that Lascelles could barely walk after seemingly tweaking his hamstring, Rafa Benitez kept his defender on the pitch for another ten minutes.
Eventually Lascelles was replaced by Isaac Hayden.
After the Blackburn game, Benitez gave the following updates on Clark and Lascelles:
We have to assess them over the next couple of days.
Lascelles? I don’t think it is very serious.
We had to make a substitution and we did what we needed to get through.
Now it is about getting three points against Cardiff.
Clark went off at half-time with a knock to the knee but we will see if he is fine. I don’t think it will be serious.
We need to wait tomorrow and see how they are, and if they cannot play, then we will bring another one in.
Jamaal Lascelles was limping, because he felt something.
For the record, Newcastle beat Blackburn 4-2 in extra time.
Newcastle will now host Watford in the FA Cup fourth round.
Social media reaction
Not sure what Rafa is playing at leaving Lascelles on. He was almost partially to blame there for a third for Blackburn. He can hardly walk never mind run. 2-2 #NUFC
— Paul Fraser (@paulfraserecho) January 15, 2019
Cannot understand what on earth Rafa is doing with Lascelles here. Rest most of your players with Cardiff in mind and then knacker arguably your most important one by keeping him on when he can barely walk. #NUFC
— Scott Wilson (@Scottwilsonecho) January 15, 2019