More details have emerged about Sandro Tonali’s muscle injury that’s keeping the Newcastle United man out of tonight’s Italy game.

News broke this morning that Newcastle‘s £55million signing from AC Milan, Sandro Tonali had sustained a muscle injury while training with the Italian national side. It was initially reported as a ‘slight muscle injury’ but with more news coming to light it doesn’t look good for Eddie Howe.

According to La Gazetta dello Sport (via Football Italia) a scan has revealed muscle fatigue and the Italian camp immediately informed Newcastle United of the news. It’s now thought that Tonali will miss the visit of Brentford on Saturday and potentially the return home to Milan on Tuesday.

Tonali’s injury gives Howe a chance to change things without criticism

While it’s definitely a kick in the teeth for Eddie Howe, all is not lost.

In fact, this could have a positive effect with Bruno Guimaraes finding his form for Brazil, he could carry that back into Newcastle as the midfield focal point once more. A duty he’s been sharing with Tonali this season with mixed results.

Newcastle United v Liverpool FC - Premier League
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As far as who replaces Tonali, then that has to be Sean Longstaff. The 25-year-old academy graduate was, as Alan Shearer said in The Athletic, ‘integral’ to the way Newcastle played last season and there’s a thought that he’s been the missing link so far this season.

A familiar midfield with Longstaff could be what Newcastle need

It would be a huge call to make for Howe were Tonali fit, but if the Italian is set to miss the next game then Howe can put Longstaff back into the Newcastle lineup without eyebrows being raised.

Italy Training Session & Press Conference
Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images

Obviously Tonali is going to be a huge miss for Newcastle, as other than the poor clearance and lack of closing down against Brighton which led to a goal, he’s hardly put a foot wrong for the Magpies. However there’s a niggling feeling that he and Bruno Guimaraes just haven’t managed to find each other’s wavelength and it’s causing an issue.

That issue will removed if Sean Longstaff replaces Tonali this weeked and that midfield familiarity could spark Newcastle back into life with a win over Brentford which will inspire confidence going into Milan a few days later.

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