Newcastle United will play Sheffield Wednesday on Wednesday night (not a coincidence, amirite?) in Hillsborough Stadium for their fourth friendly match of the preseason. Earlier this week, Alan Pardew said through the NUFC website that he would be playing mostly younger players:
Having just got back from New Zealand, some of the lads need a bit of a rest so [Wednesday] will be a chance for some of the younger lads in the squad.
It's an understandable position, and with eight friendlies crammed into a month, this was always going to happen at some point, and may yet again. The more curmudgeon-y section of the fanbase took to social media to express their displeasure, but most supporters understand this move.
So if we can accept that it's perfectly fine to field a squad of reserve players, and I think we should, let's talk about which players ought to be receiving a call. For me, I'd like to see a healthy mix of older younger players, if you will, such as Shane Ferguson, and some of the very young players, like Freddie Woodman. The former group should all be looking to catch Pardew's eye for the current season, while a Championship club like Sheffield Wednesday would represent a formidable enough test for the latter group. Who would you like to see?