Alan Shearer is concerned about how playing in the FA Cup third round will affect Newcastle United this week.
Newcastle travel to Sheffield United at 6pm in the Premier League on Tuesday evening after playing Arsenal at the weekend.
Their match with the Gunners on Saturday kicked off at 5.30pm and went into extra-time when it was level at 0-0 after 90 minutes.
Usually at this stage in the competition that would have resulted in a replay. Yet in a bid to avoid unnecessary extra fixtures in a congested season due to the coronavirus pandemic, replays have been scrapped in 2020/21.
It meant that the Magpies played deep into Saturday evening and didn’t even finish with a victory to lift their spirits. Late goals from Emile Smith-Rowe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang sealed a 2-0 win for Arsenal.
“It was a tough night for Newcastle,” Shearer told the BBC, as quoted by Chronicle Live.
“They had two very good chances and the game could have and should have been wrapped up. And it’s been a tough night not only with the defeat but with extra time.
“They go into Tuesday’s match at six ‘o clock, which is going to be a big ask for a lot of these players.”
Why Alan Shearer is worried about Newcastle
Six players played the full 120 minutes for Newcastle on Saturday as manager Steve Bruce made seven changes to his side.
Ciaran Clark, Martin Dubravka, Paul Dummett, Isaac Hayden, Jeff Hendrick and Sean Longstaff could all therefore struggle to feature at Bramall Lane.
Andy Carroll also played 105 minutes. Matt Ritchie was on the pitch for 75 minutes.
Bruce was able to rest some regular first team players in order for them to be fresh to face the Blades, though.
Karl Darlow, Federico Fernandez and Fabian Schar didn’t make the trip to the Emirates Stadium, while Matty Longstaff was an unused substitute.
Jonjo Shelvey and Callum Wilson were also absent, although remain fitness doubts for Tuesday’s game.
The Blades also played in the FA Cup on Saturday, of course, although kicked off two-and-a-half hours earlier and beat Bristol Rovers within 90 minutes.