Rafa Benitez reveals why he will leave Callum Roberts and Jamie Sterry out of his Newcastle United squad

Rafa Benitez and Jacob Murphy.
Rafa Benitez and Jacob Murphy.

Newcastle United’s Jacob Murphy is set to face Watford – as West Bromwich Albion push to sign him.

The winger is a loan target for the Championship club.

However, Rafa Benitez will not let Murphy leave unless Newcastle signs another winger in this month’s transfer window.

Asked about Murphy, United’s manager said: “He’s training well. They can’t sign him today.

“If we don’t add more players then we have to manage with this group of players.”

Benitez will again be without Jonjo Shelvey, Paul Dummett and Mohamed Diame.

And Ki Sung-yueng is also sidelined after returning from the Asian Cup with a hamstring injury.

“They’re obviously getting better – Shelvey, Dummett and Diame,” said Benitez.

“Ki was a surprise for us, because he was coming back from the Asian Cup with an injury, so we were not very happy with the situation, but he’s injured at the moment,” said Benitez.

“It seems it could be a couple of weeks maximum if everything is fine.

“Fernandez and Kenedy are fine. They were training.”

Meanwhile, Callum Roberts and Jamie Sterry will not be involved.

Roberts scored in the club’s third-round replay win over Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park last week, while Sterry played in both games.

“Callum Roberts and Jamie Sterry will not be in the squad,” said Benitez.

“Why? Because it’s a Premier League team, you have more players and you have to try and manage with a stronger team if you can.”