Newcastle United U21’s will visit Blundell Park in a confident mood on Tuesday night - wins over Doncaster Rovers and Notts County have put Ben Dawson's side on the verge of booking their place in the last 32 of the competition.
Last season the young Magpies went out in the group stages of their first ever entry into the Checkatrade Trophy, missing out on qualification from a group that included Port Vale, Oldham Athletic and Crewe Alexandra.
Dawson is the man in charge of the Magpies’ under-21 side, having taken charge in 2014 following the departure of Willie Donachie.
Ones to watch
Attacking winger who knows where the goal is. Call made his U18 debut against Aston Villa on 6 October 2012. Played his first game for the U21s against West Ham on 2 September 2013. He’s been with United since the age of eight
United signed Victor from the youth squad of Spanish third tier club UE Cornella. Fernandez, who has been capped at U18 level by the Catalan national team, made his Magpies bow for the U23s against West Bromwich Albion on 6 February 2017 and became the second Spanish youngster to join Academy this season, following on from fellow forward Juanito, acquired from Recreativo de Huelva. Joined the first team squad for their 4-day training camp in Alicante in March 2018 and played 45 minutes against Antwerp on 18 March. Member of the team that won the Hong Kong sevens in May 2018 and named player of the tournament.
Sean is a box-to-box midfielder who is said to base his game on former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard.
Went out on loan to Blackpool and became a regular for them in League One.
Last time out
26 Oct 2005 Town 0-1 Newcastle United (League Cup)
Neck and neck
It looks like it is going to be a fight between Town and Doncaster Rovers for the final qualifying spot. Both sides are on three points going into the final group stage ties, with Rovers currently occupying second spot in the Group G table on goal difference.
Rovers head to Notts County on Wednesday for their final group stage fixture.
The Town team
Town boss Michael Jolley named a strong side last time out in the competition at Doncaster Rovers and could be set to do the same again, in a bid to get through to the knock-out stages. He may decide to give Harry Cardwell and John Welsh more game time after recovering from injuries.
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