'Stuff of dreams', 'Witness the magic' - Newcastle fans react to surprise inclusion v Liverpool
By Russell Edge
Newcastle United fans have turned to social media to voice their joy at Jonjo Shelvey’s return to the starting XI for the clash against Liverpool on Sunday.
The central midfielder had not seen himself named in the starting line up following his red card against Tottenham on the opening day of the season, with Isaac Hayden and Mikel Merino preferred in the centre of the park.
However he will line up against his former side alongside Merino in place of Hayden, as one of two changes made to the starting XI after last week’s defeat to Brighton.
The Magpies announced Rafael Benitez’s choice via their official Twitter account, with the Spanish boss bringing another former Red to his side in the shape of Javier Manquillo, who replaces Chancel Mbemba.
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) October 1, 2017
However it was the return of Shelvey which caught the fans’ attention, and they took to Twitter to voice their excitement at seeing a midfield duo of Shelvey and Merino.
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Here, Football Insider has rounded up a selection of the supporters’ best tweets:
Shelvey and Merino starting together I would just like to thank not only god but also Jesus
— Matt (@MatthewArnott) October 1, 2017
It's happened… shelvey and merino starting in midfield today we will witness the magic ???????? RAFAELSSSS BLACK N WHITE ARMY #NUFC
— NatalieNisbet (@NatalieNibble) October 1, 2017
Shelvey and merino, interesting
— Lewis (@lewjking) October 1, 2017
— michelle banks (@mchlstbs) October 1, 2017
Merino and Shelvey just sounds unreal ⚫⚪⚫⚪
— Kieran White (@Whitey422001) October 1, 2017
Merino and Shelvey together ???????????????????????????????????? impending 4-0 loss #nufc
— Jack Booth (@jackbooth12) October 1, 2017
His return may come as a surprise to many, with Benitez stating he was not certain whether Merino and Shelvey could play in the same side.
The Magpies will be looking to return to winning ways after their 1-0 defeat on the south coast last week, and three points would see them leapfrog their opponents in the table.
Liverpool meanwhile beat Leicester 3-2 in their last league outing, while they also secured a 1-1 draw away at Spartak Moscow in the Champions League in midweek.
In other Newcastle United news, there has been a crucial update on the future of the club.