By Russell Edge

19th Sep, 2017 | 6:15am

Axe first team mainstay: Three reasons Jonjo Shelvey should start v Brighton

COMMENT by Russell Edge

When Jonjo Shelvey received a red card for a stamp on Dele Alli on the opening day of the season he probably was not expecting to still be waiting for his next start for Newcastle United.

However, the impressive form of Isaac Hayden and Mikel Merino, who have formed quite the partnership for the Magpies, means that the former Liverpool man has had to settle for a series of substitute appearances since returning from suspension.

He played such a vital role during the club’s rise from the Championship, demonstrating his vision and ability to cut defences apart with his passing time and again.

There is no doubt he would have been looking to prove himself in the top flight, but his petulance, coupled with the emergence of the on-loan Merino, means that such an opportunity is yet to arise.

However, that should change this weekend when Rafael Benitez and his side make the long trip from the north east to the south coast to take on fellow promoted side Brighton.

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Here, Football Insider analyses three reasons why the 25-year-old should be reinstated to the starting XI, including dropping the axe on a mainstay this season.

Click ‘2’ to see the first reason Shelvey should see himself in the starting XI against Brighton