Early team news arrives ahead of cup final as Howe discusses Willock, Joelinton & GK situation

Eddie Howe has been speaking to the media ahead of this weekend’s massive trip to Wembley, where Newcastle United will take on Manchester United in the final of the Carabao Cup.

The good news is that Joelinton is ‘OK’ after coming off in our 2-0 defeat to Liverpool with a minor complaint, while Joe Willock is ‘in a race to be fit’, with Howe currently ‘hopeful’ he’ll pass a late fitness test.

Howe also talked up the full belief he has in Loris Karius and Mark Gillespie; his only two goalkeeping options for Sunday with Nick Pope suspended, Martin Dubravka ineligible and Karl Darlow out on loan.

The boss has also discussed our preparations, saying we’ve trained ‘really well’ and are desperate to ‘do the club proud’ ahead of our trip to the capital:

Eddie Howe on Joelinton and Joe Willock:

“We think Joelinton is OK from the weekend – there’s still a long time to go before the game.

“Joe Willock will be in a race to be fit but we’re hopeful.”

Eddie Howe on team selection:

“I’m very much of the mindset that I would like to see training and watch and observe the players before picking the team – that’s my normal process.

“Players always have an opportunity to change your mind and force you into a change of perception.”

Eddie Howe on the goalkeeping situation:

“I’m disappointed for Nick but I’m also pleased another goalkeeper will get an opportunity.

“We have to be positive about our situation and the game.

“Yes it’s a blow to lose Nick but we still believe in the team and the group we have.”

Eddie Howe on this week’s preparations ahead of the final:

“It will be a normal preparation in terms of our training week.

“The lads have trained really well today.

“We will make our way to Wembley on the day before the game and hopefully settle in quickly and get used to our surroundings.

We are desperate to do well and do the club proud.

“We are pleased the game is here.”

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