Rafa Benitez makes a interesting admission as he waits on Dwight Gayle

Dwight Gayle
Dwight Gayle

Rafa Benitez has NOT ruled out playing Aleksandar Mitrovic AND Dwight Gayle together.

Up to now, Benitez has started one or the other up front for Newcastle United this season.

We will see if they can play together, or one at a time. But I’m happy they are scoring each game.

Rafa Benitez

Benitez is sweating on the fitness of Gayle – who missed last weekend’s 2-1 Championship win over Preston North End through injury – ahead of tomorrow’s home game against Cardiff City.

Mitrovic – who netted twice in last week’s 6-0 EFL Cup win over Preston – scored both of Newcastle’s goals at Deepdale.

And United manager Benitez is happy to have a selection dilemma should Gayle prove his fitness in time to face Cardiff.

“It’s better for me to have this problem – two strikers scoring goals,” said Benitez.

Up to now, Benitez has suggested that he is not minded to pair Gayle and Mitrovic up front from the start.

But he could yet field his two top scorers in the game starting XI.

Benitez said: “They have to compete.

“The fans are asking if we can play with two strikers. It’s a good to create that debate.

“The team is doing well. He (Mitrovic) is fine.

“We will see if they can play together, or one at a time.

“But I’m happy they are scoring each game.”

Meanwhile, Gayle has won the PFA Fans’ Championship Player of the Month award for last month.

The 26-year-old, signed from Crystal Palace in the summer for £10million, scored four times in October as Newcastle went top of the Championship to take his goal tally for the season to 11.