Newcastle United fans have been left raging on social media over the situation of Mikel Merino after manager Rafael Benitez left him out of the match day squad for the club’s clash against Arsenal on Sunday.
The Magpies revealed their line up for the match at St James’ Park via their official Twitter account, confirming that the Spanish manager had chosen to name an unchanged side from the victory away at Leicester City last weekend.
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) April 15, 2018
Benitez and his men look to pick up their fourth successive win against the Gunners, having seen off Southampton, Huddersfield Town and the Foxes in their last league outings, but will have to do with the Spanish 21-year-old, who was nowhere to be seen.
Fans turned to Twitter to voice their frustrations at his absence, with several wondering if he is set for a summer exit.
Here, Football Insider has rounded up a selection of the supporters’ best tweets:
WHERE IS MERINO https://t.co/YbiVpxW4LD
— beth (@eazyIogic) April 15, 2018
— Kieren Wilkinson (@KierenW6) April 15, 2018
No Merino again. Think he’s s a gonna?#nufc
— Dan Holmes (@DanToon4Life) April 15, 2018
No Merino in squad! Not a good sign that tbh.
— Dean Bell (@Deano_B1985) April 15, 2018
Rite Merino not even in the subs again. He’s going in the summer ffs
— SHΛY (@MagikelMikel) April 15, 2018
Is Merino still alive?
— Paul (@AbsoIuteIyAyoze) April 15, 2018
Does make you think whats gannin on with Merino if he cannot even make the bench. Is the lad injured?
— Dan (@dan_hazza) April 15, 2018
— NUFC Network (@NUFC_Network) April 15, 2018
Arsenal have travelled to Tyneside after a gruelling away trip to CSKA Moscow in the Europa League on Thursday, a strong Gunners side holding the Russian side to a 2-2 draw and secure a 6-3 aggregate win to reach the semi-finals of the competition.
Their last league game saw them defeat Southampton at the Emirates Stadium in a 3-2 thriller, and have history on their side going into Sunday’s game, with Newcastle having failed to taste victory over Arsene Wenger’s team since 2010, a winless run which includes eight consecutive defeats, most recently the 1-0 win earlier in the season.
In other Newcastle United transfer news, the club are eyeing up a stunning double swoop from their fierce rivals.