Eddie Howe reveals why Matt Target was left out of his Newcastle United starting XI

Eddie Howe has explained his decision to leave Matt Targett out of his Newcastle United starting XI at Craven Cottage.

Targett, signed from Aston Villa on a permanent deal this summer, came off the bench late in yesterday’s 4-1 win over Fulham.

Howe had recalled Sven Botman to his team and started Dan Burn at left-back ahead of the 27-year-old.

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"Matt Targett had been ill, so we decided not to risk him,” said Howe. “That’s why I said in the press conference (on Friday) it’s been a difficult few weeks. It’s not just injuries, but illness running through the team as well. Delighted to come here and win off the back of that.”

Howe also left Joelinton out of his starting XI at Craven Cottage because of an injury. United’s head coach said: “Hopefully, a full week’s training will make the difference for him – and he’ll be back next week.”

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Matt Targett.