Javier Manquillo and Jacob Murphy handed Newcastle starts against Watford

Javier Manquillo and Jacob Murphy have been handed starts against Watford.
Rafa BenitezRafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Rafa Benitez has made two changes for Newcastle United's visit to Vicarage Road.

Manquillo and Murphy come in for DeAndre Yedlin and Matt Ritchie, who drop down to the bench.

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Watford, beaten 2-0 by Tottenham Hotspur last weekend, are 13th in the table and three points behind 10th-placed Newcastle.

“They still have some good players," said Benitez. "We were watching the last game against Tottenham, and they had chances on the counter-attack.

"They were in a good moment (when they won 3-0 at St James's Park). Now it's at the end of the season, and it's not easy for everybody that's safe."

Benitez and his staff know Watford manager Javi Gracia well.

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Gracia took over at Vicarage Road in January following the dismissal of Marco Silva.

“I don’t remember if I played against him, but he was playing with (United coach) Mikel Antia," said Benitez. "We know each other very well."

NEWCASTLE UNITED: Dubravka; Manquillo, Lascelles, Lejeune, Dummett; Diame, Shelvey; Murphy, Perez, Kenedy; Gayle. Subs: Darlow, Yedlin, Haidara, Hayden, Merino, Ritchie, Joselu.

WATFORD: Karnezis, Janmaat, Cathcart, Kabasele, Holebas, Pereyra, Capoue, Doucoure, Hughes, Gray, Deeney. Subs: Gomes, Britos, Mariappa, Deulofeu, Richarlison, Sinclair, Femenia.