Eddie Howe and his Newcastle team will have been pleased with their hard-fought win against Brentford at the weekend, which came after three consecutive Premier League defeats and ahead of their first Champions League encounter in nearly two decades versus Milan.
A lot of his usual first-team stars have struggled throughout the bulk of the 2023/24 English Premier League season, and while the manager is willing to stick with them, he does have a number of players in reserve who may be used.
The problem for Howe is that all of them – eight in total – are within a year of having their contracts with the club expire, and there must be good reasons why he hasn’t called on the most of them on a regular basis before now.
Fabian Schar, Paul Dummett, Mark Gillespie, Loris Karius, Emil Krafth, Jamaal Lascelles, Javier Manquillo, and Matt Ritchie, according to The Mag, will be free to depart in June 2024 if the Magpies do not extend their contracts.
While it is understood that some of those identified will not be part of Howe’s plans regardless, others may be called upon due to injuries and/or suspensions.
Financial Fair Play may potentially have an impact on what happens with the players, as Newcastle and all other clubs must now work within that framework.