There was news from the ghost-ship on Barrack Road regarding the pool of players to head out to China for the PL Asian Trophy. The players climbing aboard the aeroplane to China today is: 

MurphyJonjo ShelveyDwight GayleMatt RitchieYoshinori MutoIsaac HaydenRolando AaronsFederico FernándezJavier ManquilloJoseluJack ColbackJamie SterryKarl DarlowFreddie Woodman, Nathan Harker, Achraf LazaarSean Longstaff, Matthew Longstaff, Owen Bailey, Kelland Watts, Tom Allan.

Confined to base are: Florian Lejeune (with a knee injury and Rob Elliot who is carrying a shoulder injury. Miguel Almiron and Christian Atsu are being given additional time off in recognition of their Copa America and AFCON commitments. 

The club will be prepared and managed for the games in China by Neil Redfearn and Ben Dawson. Neither has managed a single game in the Premier League. 

Although the club hasn’t bothered its arse to provide any help and support for supporters who might be making the trip (TF will be at every game), the Newcastle United Supporters Trust has produced an excellent document which is worth a read even if you aren’t going – just click here

Having gone on sale to supporters with 20 loyalty points and then 10, tickets for what in normal times would be an attractive away game at Easter Road versus Hibernian are now down to zero points suggesting very little interest amongst Mags to go to the game. Click here

United is also punting tickets rather hopefully for the home friendly with St Etienne at a tenner for adults and a fiver for kids. Again, this would have been an attractive fixture against an historic French club at a time when supporters weren’t at historically high levels of disenchantment with the club. Click here