Whist those who don’t care much for International breaks deal with their withdrawal symptoms and look forward to the return of domestic football this weekend, we round up an eventful week for those Newcastle players who travelled far and wide to represent their countries.
And it’s a toss up for who should get top billing between Rondon and Almiron. We’ll start with the former mainly because at least his experience was positive.
His and his teams performance against a Argentina side that included Messi was outstanding. Venezuela earning a 3-1 away win with Rondon scoring a fantastic goal in the process.
For Almiron it was an entirely different experience. Having been largely anonymous in a defeat to Peru he was dropped to the bench, only to come on as a sub to set up a goal before promptly being send off for a particularly dirty, studs down the back of the calf, tackle.
Elsewhere there was less drama for a number of fellow Magpies.
Martin Dubravka played twice for Slovakia, keeping a clean sheet in a 2-0 win against first Hungary before losing against Wales 1-0. Speaking of Wales and there was another cap for Paul Dummett who finally made it back into the fold after missing a number of Internationals due to injury and not being selected. Paul played 60 minutes in the warm up match against Trinidad and Tobago.
Over in the States and there was a proud moment for DeAndre Yedlin, who Captained his side for the first time ever against Chili. Yedlin played twice for the USA during the break recording a 1-0 win against Ecuador after coming on as a sub and a 1-1 draw against the aforementioned Chile.
Of all the events surrounding Newcastle players during the International break however, there can be none that created more headlines and international outcry than those involving Fabian Schar. Schar suffered a horrific head injury that left him unconscious on the field for 4 minutes, a player from the opposing team having to removed his swallowed tongue from his throat. The controversy was the Schar was astonishingly allowed to then continue to play the game after coming round. And whilst he then contributed two assists in a 2-0 win against Georgia, it quite frankly beggars belief that in this day and age, with all the learning around head injuries, that Fabian was allowed back on the field. Dangerous and unacceptable.
Christian Atsu played the first half in a 3-1 win against Mauritania following a full 90 minutes in a 1-0 win against Kenya.
The good news seems to be that all those who travelled far and wide this last fortnight are back in the North East and feeling no long term effects from their excursions.