Newcastle United set to unleash 'outstanding' player v Tottenham Hotspur after four months out

Newcastle United midfielder Sandro Tonali is replaced by Elliot Anderson during Champions League clash vs AC Milan.  (Photo by MARCO BERTORELLO/AFP via Getty Images)Newcastle United midfielder Sandro Tonali is replaced by Elliot Anderson during Champions League clash vs AC Milan.  (Photo by MARCO BERTORELLO/AFP via Getty Images)
Newcastle United midfielder Sandro Tonali is replaced by Elliot Anderson during Champions League clash vs AC Milan. (Photo by MARCO BERTORELLO/AFP via Getty Images)
Now is the Newcastle United midfielder’s chance to shine ahead of the remaining seven Premier League games.

With seven Premier League matches to go, now might be the time Newcastle United get to see their “Geordie Maradona” at full pelt.

The Magpies have long raved about the potential of Whitley Bay-born Elliot Anderson. There are moments that have lived up to the hype, but rarely has that been seen on consistent basis, yet.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

After feeling his way into the first-team environment last season, those behind at scenes at St James’ Park had predicted a big 2023-24 campaign for the 21-year-old following another stellar pre-season, particularly out in the United States.

It began brightly. Anderson started four of Newcastle’s opening nine Premier League matches, as well as making substitutes appearances in the San Siro against AC Milan and that 4-1 win over Paris Saint-Germain.

But little did Anderson know that the sore back he woke up with less than 24 hours after the 4-0 win over Crystal Palace on October 21 would keep him out for four months. It turned out to be a very complex issue, hence the significant time out.

With United’s midfield quickly falling in numbers, whether that be Sandro Tonali’s suspension or further injuries to Joe Willock and Joelinton, the emergence of 17-year-old Lewis Miley followed. But it’s not unfathomable to think that could - and perhaps should - have been Anderson’s time to shine.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

A sliding door moment for the Scotland youth international? With Miley impressing and Willock returning at a similar time to Anderson in late-February, it might have felt like that opportunity had passed. But with just over five weeks of the season remaining, the door appears to be back open.

A determined and physical first-half display during last Tuesday’s 1-1 draw against Everton was followed up with a sumptuous piece of skill to help win Newcastle the game against Fulham at the weekend.

Another setback for Willock, in which it is not yet known if it could end his season, saw Anderson introduced in the 40th minute at Craven Cottage. Come the 81st minute, a no-look backheel to Harvey Barnes inspired his side’s winner as winger’s cross led to Bruno Guimaraes’ strike.

“He’s an outstanding player,” said Howe after the game. “He’s improving all the time. This, I think, was going to be a big season for him but unfortunately he picked up that injury which stopped his momentum.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“He had a brilliant pre-season but we really rate him, and we feel there is so much more to come. He’s certainly growing into that position now and starting to look really assured.”

With Tonali absent until August, and Miley joining Joelinton and probably Willock in the treatment room, Anderson is almost certain to start against Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday alongside the only other available midfielders in Guimaraes and Sean Longstaff.

We’ve witnessed flashes of brilliance from the man supporters label the Geordie Maradona, now is the time for consistency.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.