Newcastle expected 4-4-1-1 v Barnsley: 27-year-old axed in two changes
By Dominic Toner
Newcastle could make two changes to their side for their final Championship game of the season against Barnsley.
The Magpies host Barnsley on Sunday in the league and still have a chance of clinching the title, but have to better the result of leaders Brighton when they travel to Aston Villa.
Rafael Benitez is set to make two changes to his side from the team that beat Cardiff 2-0 in their last game.
Jack Colback and Daryl Murphy could drop out of the starting XI, with Jonjo Shelvey and Daryl Murphy replacing them.
Colback, 27, struggled to make an impact in the game against Cardiff and playmaker Shelvey is set to be restored after receiving some rest in the last match.
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Star striker Dwight Gayle is being assessed ahead of the game and is unlikely to be risked from the start with promotion already secured, while wide man Matt Ritchie remains suspended.
Benitez is set to continue with goalkeeper Rob Elliot as he leaves out number one Karl Darlow during the closing stages of the season.
Meanwhile, it’s expected to be the same back four as captain Jamaal Lascelles continues to recover from his successful surgery.
DeAndre Yedlin, Chancel Mbemba, Ciaran Clark and Paul Dummett are likely to be the backline.
Meanwhile, Shelvey is set to return and play alongside Isaac Hayden in the centre of midfielder.
That leaves Ayoze Perez and Christian Atsu on the wings, with the latter scoring a fantastic free-kick in the victory over Cardiff.
Mohamed Diame is set to play the number role and supporter attacker Mitrovic, with Murphy struggling to provide a goal threat against Cardiff.
In other Newcastle team news, Elliot has slammed critics who made this bold claim about the club.