Eddie Howe gives youth a chance as Martin Dubravka stakes claim - Inside Newcastle United’s training footage

What we learned from Newcastle United’s training ground footage ahead of facing Arsenal.

Newcastle United travel to Arsenal this weekend - and supporters have been provided with a short glimpse into their preparations.

Training footage released by the club’s media team has got fans talking on social media - and here we pick out our five key takeaways:

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Eddie Howe’s absence 

After receiving a positive Covid-19 result last Friday, Howe remains stuck in his hotel room but that doesn’t mean to say he hasn’t been busy.

The 43-year-old has planned every training session, reviewed all footage and communicated with players via phone.

Implementing the sessions has fallen on his backroom team’s shoulders, with assistant head coach Jason Tindall playing a prominent role along with the support of Stephen Perches, Simon Weatherstone, Graeme Jones and Ben Dawson.

Howe could be back in the dugout at the Emirates on Saturday but that dependent on returning a negative Covid-19 sample before then.

Four under-23s called up as Elliot Anderson impresses

Matthew Bondswell, Jack Young, Dylan Stephenson and Elliot Anderson trained with the first-team as the latter eyes a way into Eddie Howe’s plans.

For Bondswell, signed on a free transfer from RB Leipzig, tidy midfielder Young and Stephenson, who has scored 10 goals this term - their recognition is a reward for their good form in the under-23s.

With Anderson however, there is genuine hope he can become a regular in Howe’s matchday plans, as revealed by the player himself after netting a hat-trick in midweek at Nottingham Forest.

“In the short-term, I’m trying to impress the manager as much as I can, show what I’ve got and see if he notices.”

He seemed to be heavily involved too, with a fantastic curling finish past Freddie Woodman into the bottom right corner picked up by the camera.

Attack, attack, attack! 

Newcastle looked far more potent in attack during the 3-3 draw with Brentford - and work has continued on bettering that this week.

Lots of training drills captured on the footage showed United focusing on getting the ball into the wide areas. Indeed, that brought joy against the Bees with substitute Ryan Fraser delivering the assist for Allan Saint-Maximin’s equaliser.

Such focus could suggest Fraser has a big role to play going forward with crossing arguably the biggest attribute in his game.

There was also a clip of Callum Wilson and Joelinton linking up. The Brazilian - much like the number 10 position he took up in the closing stages last Saturday - played a quick one-two with Wilson before finishing past Dubravka.

Again, it is another indication of how much Joelinton is valued by Howe and his coaching staff.

Martin Dubravka stakes his claim

Dubravka produced plenty of sharp saves - denying Miguel Almiron from the penalty spot - but it was his double save from Wilson and Joelinton that gained traction online.

Indeed, his progression in training will only increase demands for the Slovakian to be recalled ahead of Karl Darlow this weekend.

Supporters had already questioned Darlow’s selection instead of Dubravka against Brentford after the latter played 90 minutes for his country during the international break.

Unfortunately, Darlow did little to justify his selection following his howler for Ivan Toney’s equaliser in the 3-3 draw. From that moment on, he looked like a man with the weight of the world on his shoulders.

Based on the training footage, Dubravka is primed for a return in between the stick after a three-month injury lay-off.

Federico Fernandez spotted

Fernandez hasn’t kicked a competitve ball since the 2-1 defeat at Wolves in early October - but the biggest mystery is his exclusion from the last four matchday squads.

Indeed, the Argentine is continuing to train as normal on Tyneside, which will only raise further questions among fans who regard him as one of the club’s most consistent defenders.

It has all been very quiet on the Fernandez absence front, apart from the explanation Graeme Jones provided after the 3-0 loss to Chelsea during his interim head coach spell.

Jones said: “I really like Feddy as a defender, but I didn’t see any value in putting him on the bench.

“If you’re winning, you’re not going to put him on, and if you’re losing, you’re not going to put him on. Feddy needs to start – or not.

“So it’s the same reason as I left him out of the 20 at Palace. It’s the same reason, as the boys did well.”

Co he make an appearance at Arsenal?