Newcastle United’s ‘secret weapon’ for Wolves clash as Alexander Isak prepares for Magpies debut

Alexander Isak is the talk of Tyneside - but it could be his strike partner that holds the key for Newcastle against Wolves on Sunday.

Supporters are eagerly anticipating their first glimpse of Isak in action and after the club met the deadline on Friday to register the striker, he is eligible to play at Molineux on Sunday, subject to international clearance.

Although Eddie Howe has a tendency to drip-feed new signings into his starting sides, United’s head coach did admit that he is ‘keen’ to see Isak in action.

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Eddie Howe's first words on Newcastle United's club-record Alexander Isak move
Chris Wood has a good record against Wolves in the Premier League (Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images)

Howe said: “We're hopeful (that he will be available). He'd probably need to train with us in the next two days to be available, really, to play. We need to see how he is physically after his game last week, so we're very keen to see him – and get him involved as soon as possible.”

Callum Wilson’s injury, which is set to keep the striker out for a ‘couple of weeks’ means that Chris Wood is the only other option for Newcastle this weekend, however, this isn’t necessarily something supporters should be too concerned about.

Back in April, Wood’s penalty secured Newcastle all three points against Wolves at St James’s Park - and it was a goal that added to the New Zealand international’s fantastic record against Sunday’s opponents.

Wood has netted six times against Wolves in the Premier League, including a hat-trick during Burnley’s 4-0 win at Molineux in April 2021.

In all, Wood has faced Wolves eight times in the top-flight and has been on the losing side on just one occasion.

Wood scored his first goal of the season against Tranmere Rovers in midweek and Howe believes that, despite having to settle for a place on the bench in the opening few weeks, he has a big role to play this season:

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“Chris has a massive part to play and, when he came on for Callum (against City), I thought he performed very well,” said United’s head coach. “He made a positive impact, linked play very well – and made a couple of lovely passes.

"The big thing with Chris when he comes on is also defending set-plays, recovering into midfield positions to help the team, he has that know-how and experience.”