Newcastle United forced into summer rethink
Newcastle United are having to rethink their pre-season campaign – after a proposed tournament in the USA was cancelled.
The club had been in discussions over playing at the first Ohio Cup in July. The tournament was set to take place in Cincinnati and Columbus, and Wolverhampton Wanderers were also set to take part along with Villarreal and Valencia.
However, the tournament has now been cancelled by the organisers amid claims there are scheduling conflicts with Major League Soccer games. Wolves, it’s reported, are still planning to visit the USA.
United are yet to announce any pre-season fixtures, and the club has not commented on the cancellation of the tournament.
The Gazette understands that Newcastle – who have made a number of pre-season visits to the USA in the Premier League era, most recently before the ill-fated 2015/16 campaign – are “disappointed” by the development, which has left them needing to make alternative arrangements for the first part of their pre-season campaign.
This is a challenge given that most other teams have already finalised their summer plans.
Head coach Eddie Howe will welcome back his players for the start of pre-season training on July 1, and the plan had been to spend around 10 days in the USA. Those players on international duty will report back later in the month.
Newcastle are 80%-owned by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, but a return to Jeddah, where Howe took his players early this year, is not an option because of the high summer temperatures in the Middle East.
The club also hopes to stage a high-profile home friendly before the new Premier League campaign kicks off.