Newcastle have to wait until April 1st for their next Premier League game.
That’s because the decision makers at Sky Sports have chosen the clash against Arsenal as that week’s instalment of Monday Night Football.
As always, the decision has hindered the travelling support, but when has that ever stopped Sky when deciding which games to broadcast?
But while the time of the game is to the detriment of the travelling Toon Army, Rafa Benitez will probably be happy that his side are on MNF.
Benitez might be thankful for MNF
Benitez has seven first-team players currently away on international duty. Out of those seven, two face trips to the United States.
DeAndre Yedlin is part of the USA team that will take on Ecuador and Chile at home, where his manager could use him as a winger.
As for Miguel Almiron, he and his Paraguay teammates are also playing in America. They’re set for friendlies against Peru and Mexico in New Jersey and Santa Clara respectively.
We’ve had a slice of luck with Salomon Rondon. Although he’s been called up to the Venezuela squad, both of their games are in Spain. That means no lengthy trip back from South America for the big man.
Yedlin and Almiron’s final game of this international break is on Tuesday. With the Arsenal game delayed until Monday, that gives them extra time to recover ahead of the trip down south.
While Yedlin could be rotated out for Javi Manquillo if he was fatigued, the prospect of taking on the Gunners without Almiron isn’t worth considering.
MNF doesn’t help the travelling Newcastle fans, but Benitez will be grateful that it gives him a better chance of getting a result.
If the game had been Saturday, Almiron might not have been ready to play. But under the lights on a Monday night, he should be ready to go.