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Club v Country row brewing for Newcastle United

Injured striker Islam Slimani is called up for Algeria despite calf injury which has kept him sidelined for the Toon

Islam Slimani in Algeria shirt
Islam Slimani - called up for Algeria despite injury

Newcastle United could be headed for a club vs country clash with North African nation Algeria, after head coach Rabad Madjer called Islam Slimani up to his squad to face Tanzania and Iran.

Slimani, who has yet to kick a ball for Newcastle, was a doubt for the March 31st clash with Huddersfield Town, and his call up to the Algeria squad is therefore puzzling at best.

The striker had been welcomed by Newcastle fans, hoping he would ignite a previously stagnant forward threat, with the line having previously been led by the hard-working, yet short of end product Joselu, and Dwight Gayle, who until recently had looked short of both fitness and confidence.

Any re-aggravation of the injury would be a setback for Newcastle in their bid for Premier League survival, with the Magpies currently sitting just 5 points clear of the relegation zone, though last weekend’s performance against Southampton has offered hope that the team can do well without the loanee striker.

If Slimani were to go through his entire loan spell without playing even one minute of football, he would surely go down as one of Newcastle’s worst ever January signings.

What do you think? Should Rafa step in and withdraw him from Algeria’s squad?