Eddie Howe explains why he made Sean Longstaff captain for Newcastle’s win vs Man United

Newcastle United currently boasts an abundance of leaders, and a new one stepped forward during the match against Manchester United on Wednesday.

Eddie Howe orchestrated a remarkable Carabao Cup triumph at Old Trafford, with his makeshift lineup securing a 3-0 victory to progress to the quarter-finals. This turned out to be a momentous occasion for Newcastle, particularly for Sean Longstaff, regardless of the outcome.

Sean Longstaff, a 26-year-old midfielder, was included in Howe’s starting XI, marking his 150th appearance for the club. This is a remarkable milestone, considering he made his debut in 2018 under Rafa Benitez’s management.

Fast forward five years, and Longstaff achieved 150 appearances, commemorating the occasion by captaining his beloved club. In the absence of Jamaal Lascelles and Kieran Trippier, Longstaff wore the captain’s armband against Manchester United.

No reason why Newcastle can't go and give it a real good go' - Sean  Longstaff - BBC Sport

Being named captain was a significant moment for Longstaff, and Eddie Howe has explained the reasoning behind this decision.

Eddie Howe expressed, “I felt he deserved it. I thought long and hard about the decision, as you do with every decision in my position, because wearing the armband for Newcastle is a significant responsibility. It’s an honor and a privilege, and it carries a substantial weight. But Sean has consistently demonstrated exceptional conduct since my arrival at the club. He has also displayed leadership qualities and is emerging as a leader. This recognition is a result of his conduct and his approach to the game.”

Based on Howe’s remarks, it is possible that we will see Longstaff captaining Newcastle again in the future. Although it was unexpected for Longstaff to be granted the captaincy at Old Trafford, Howe believed he deserved the opportunity, and Longstaff did not disappoint. The academy graduate delivered a professional performance, adding to his outstanding season.

Longstaff has already experienced numerous high points in his career, and it will be intriguing to hear whether he considers captaining Newcastle to a victory over Manchester United to be a greater achievement than scoring in front of the Gallowgate against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.

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