Sean Longstaff had to be taken off at half time against West Ham on Saturday after picking up an injury.

The midfielder was involved in a 50/50 collision with Robert Snodgrass that resulted in a free kick to the Hammers, but it was the Newcastle youngster who came off worst.

(Photo by Ian Horrocks/Getty Images)

He was replaced by Mo Diame who impressed despite being unable to inspire a comeback for the Magpies.

Longstaff had been on a sensational run of form, and this injury couldn’t come at a worse time.

Longstaff has three replacements waiting

The 21-year-old got in the team because of circumstance. With Diame and Jonjo Shelvey out injured and Ki Sung-Yueng at the Asian games, Longstaff got a chance.

Nothing was expected of him, but his partnership with Isaac Hayden has helped guide Newcastle six points clear of the relegation zone.

(photo by Lee Parker/Action Plus via Getty Images)

Even with the three centre midfielders returning to the fold, Rafa Benitez wouldn’t change his surprisingly successful midfield pair.

But now that Longstaff is injured, the vultures will be circling to take his place. Diame did well as a substitute, and was a guaranteed starter for Benitez before his injury.

Ki has also been on the bench lately, and he was the catalyst for Newcastle to get their first wins of the season against Watford and Bournemouth. Then there’s Shelvey, whose talent on the ball cannot be questioned.

(Photo by Serena Taylor/Newcastle United)

Considering Benitez was unwilling to change his successful midfield pairing, it might be difficult for Longstaff to get back into the starting XI should someone step up and perform to the same ability.

Hopefully the injury doesn’t keep the youngster on the sidelines for too long.

Related Topics