Rafa Benitez adds Massadio Haidara to his Newcastle squad '“ but rules out a return for Aleksandar Mitrovic

Rafa Benitez has included Massadio Haidara in his Newcastle United squad.

By The Newsroom
Saturday, 5th May 2018, 9:43 am
Updated Saturday, 5th May 2018, 9:56 am
Rafa Benitez (Pic: Stephen Dobson)
Rafa Benitez (Pic: Stephen Dobson)

Benitez's side take on Watford at Vicarage Road this afternoon.

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Haidara – who is out of contract this summer – is in the club's squad, but Benitez is reluctant to hand the defender, signed from Nancy in January 2013, a farewell appearance.

“Haidara is in the squad," said Benitez. "That means he can be available and he can play. Do we need to put him in this situation? Maybe not."

Haidara's only previous appearance this season came in January's FA Cup defeat to Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Adam Armstrong

Meanwhile, Benitez will not call upon any returning loan players in the club's final two Premier League games.

Adam Armstrong plays his final game for promoted League One club Blackburn Rovers this evening, and the forward would be available to play in next week's fixtures against Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea.

Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic could also be back on Tyneside should third-placed Fulham claim the second automatic promotion place tomorrow.

Benitez, however, has told Armstrong, Mitrovic and the club's other loanees that they are free to go on holiday.

“The players who were on loan, they know that they have holidays and that's it, so you cannot create a mess," said Benitez. "Everyone who has been on loan, they know that they can go on holidays."