Eddie Howe reveals Martin Dubravka health worry

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Newcastle United boss Eddie Howe spoke out in his post-match interview to reveal that goalkeeper Martin Dubravka has been suffering from health concerns, despite being their hero in the FA Cup against Blackburn Rovers last night.

The Magpies will feel relieved this morning after successfully qualifying for the quarter-finals of the FA Cup after a battle with Blackburn Rovers that took them all the way to penalties.

Ewood Park was bouncing throughout the 120 minutes of open play with 7,000 Newcastle fans making the trip across to the North West, and ultimately their support paid off when Martin Dubravka saved two penalties attempted by their Championship-level opponents.

Eddie Howe will be grateful for the potential confidence boost that the clash has provided his squad as there has been a lot of inconsistent performances of late in the Premier League.

There is no doubt that the manager will be hoping that the team can carry that winning momentum from last night into their meeting with Wolverhampton Wanderers this weekend.

The former Bournemouth boss did a post-match interview with BBC Radio Newcastle where he expressed his delight, but also revealed that Dubravka “hasn’t been 100%” over the last few months:

“It’s a difficult one because there’s only so much I can say. I don’t want to talk too much detail about people’s health for obvious reasons nut Martin hasn’t been 100% during the last period.”

Our verdict on Newcastle’s win over Blackburn Rovers…

It is no secret that the Magpies have one of the worst defensive records in the entire Premier League this season, and it has reflected in their league position compared to last year.

Newcastle are nowhere near being in contention to emulate their fourth-place finish last season, as they are currently tenth and 15 points adrift of Aston Villa in fourth, so the progression to the FA Cup quarter-finals will be really important to keep morale high and the players competitive.

Indeed, Howe has had to work with a reduced squad for the majority of the season due to injuries, however, many first-team players are returning to action with Alexander Isak and Joe Willock recently returning to the starting line-up.

Nick Pope is looking unlikely to return this season and his absence has certainly been felt at St James’ Park, but Dubravka’s performance last night could be the confidence boost the player needs to start being much more consistent.

With that being said, there is no reason why this win over Blackburn Rovers can’t motivate and uplift the players to perform with more confidence and consistency over the business end of the season, and of course, the North East club are just one game away in the FA Cup from another trip to Wembley.

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