Newcastle United were phenomenal against West Ham United on Saturday.
The Magpies looked like a completely different side at the London Stadium from what has been on show in the opening few months of the season and raced into a 3-0 lead.
Goals from Ciaran Clark, Federico Fernandez, and Jonjo Shelvey were the rewards for Newcastle after completely dominating the first hour of the game.
West Ham did come back into it with goals from Fabian Balbuena and Robert Snodgrass made the scoreline more respectable but Steve Bruce will have been delighted with the showing.
Bruce has been forced to switch his defence around numerous times this season, with Jamaal Lascelles the only player that has cemented his spot.
The two scorers, Clark and Fernandez, have been introduced into the side recently and have not put a foot wrong for the Magpies – something that should see them cement their places in the side for the near future.
That means the impressive Fabian Schar and Paul Dummett both face an uphill battle to return to the starting line up despite being two of the standout players at St James’ Park in the last year.
Schar is currently sidelined through injury, and Bruce did give an update on his potential return date before the game against West Ham.
“Fabian could be available for Bournemouth,” he told the Northern Echo.
“If not, we’ll be into the international break. He’s been sore with his knee, but we don’t think it’s too serious.”
The 27-year-old has been one of the Magpies’ most consistent performers since arriving in the North East. Schar has made 2.4 tackles and interceptions per game according to WhoScored – the most interceptions in the entire squad.
Given the fact that Clark, Fernandez, and Lascelles have formed a solid partnership in the last two games, it is hard to see any way back into the team for Schar at this moment, even if he is fit for the Bournemouth clash.
This article was originally posted here