Eddie Howe has confirmed Jamaal Lascelles will remain Newcastle United captain next season.
What’s the latest Newcastle United news?
With Dan Burn and Sven Botman arriving over the course of the last two windows, Lascelles’ chances of regular first-team football looked bleak.
Even before the signing of Botman – a player Newcastle chased for months – Burn was largely selected as Fabian Schar’s defensive partner for the back end of last season.
While previously hugely important in Rafa Benitez’s rebuild between 2016 and 2019, Lascelles made only four Premier League starts after Burn’s arrival and had been linked with a return to Nottingham Forest.
In his absence, Kieran Trippier took the armband, while Jonjo Shelvey replaced him when the January signing was injured.
What did Howe say about Lascelles?
Naturally then, Lascelles’ dwindling importance raised questions about his suitability as the club’s captain. Given Schar was handed a new deal, Botman was chased for months and Burn has done nothing but impress, it seems reasonable to assume the 28-year-old would not play often enough to warrant the armband.
Still, speaking to the Shields Gazette, Howe said: “Jamaal’s our captain.
“He led the team really well last season. He’s a big presence, and a very positive influence on the squad.
“He’s been excellent pre-season, so Jamaal is our captain. If he doesn’t play, for whatever reason, injuries or whatever, I will pick somebody else. But it’s not the time to talk about it.”
What has Lascelles said about his own future?
Speaking in March, Lascelles talked of his desire to stay at St James’ Park for the foreseeable future.
“I’d love to stay here for as long as possible. Who wouldn’t?” he said (via Newcastle World).
“I’m captain of the club and where things are going at the minute is a fantastic thing to be part of.”