Newcastle's Matt Ritchie passed fit to play against Vitesse, but key defender sidelined

St James's Park
St James's Park

Chancel Mbemba is OUT of Newcastle United's final pre-season friendly.

But Matt Ritchie has been passed fit to play against Vitesse Arnhem this afternoon (3pm kick-off).

It will be the first chance for the club's summer signings to play at the stadium, where a 20,000 crowd is expected.

Winger Ritchie, signed from Bournemouth for £10million, has recovered from the groin injury which had kept him out of the Sporting Lokeren and Southend United games.

Grant Hanley makes his first start for the club since his £5.5million move from Blackburn Rovers.

But Mbemba, another of Rafa Benitez's defenders, is not involved, having gone over his ankle in training.

Mbemba should still be fit for the season opener against Fulham at Craven Cottage on August 5.

* There will be cash turnstiles at St James's Park this afternoon.

NEWCASTLE UNITED: Sels; Janmaat, Hanley, Lascelles (c), Dummett; Hayden, Colback; Anita, Perez, Ritchie; Gayle. Subs: Darlow, Sterry, Gamez, Tiote, Shelvey, Saivet, Thauvin, Gouffran, Aarons, Armstrong, Mitrovic.

VITESSE ARNHEM: Room, Leerdam, Kashia, Kruiswijk, Ota, Nakamba, Baker, Vako, Rashica, Zhang, Nathan.

Meanwhile, fit-again defender Kevin Mbabu is in the United Under-23 team which will take on York City at Bootham Crescent this afternoon (3pm).