Rafa Benitez mulls over Moussa Sissoko recall after opening defeat to Fulham

Rafa Benitez hasn't ruled out recalling Moussa Sissoko to his Newcastle United starting XI '“ if he's not sold.

Saturday, 6th August 2016, 5:00 am
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 4:04 pm
Moussa Sissoko in action for France against Portugal in the Euro 2016 final

Benitez’s side lost their Championship season-opener against Fulham last night, Matt Smith’s first-half header giving the hosts a 1-0 win.

Sissoko – who wanted to leave St James’s Park this summer – reported back for pre-season training on Monday, but didn’t travel to London with the squad.

And United manager Benitez hasn’t ruled out involving the 26-year-old – who is interesting a clutch of clubs including Real Madrid and Juventus – against Huddersfield Town at St James’s Park a week today.

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Asked about Sissoko, Benitez said: “Moussa was not match fit, because he came on Monday.

“We don’t have to sell him. Sissoko will be better next weekend, he will train tomorrow and during the week. We will see how he is.”

Newcastle rate Sissoko – who was given an extended break after his involvement at Euro 2016 with finalists France – in the £35million-bracket.

Sissoko came under fire last season from fans unhappy with his performances, though Benitez handed him the captain’s armband in the last few weeks of the campaign.