Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Speed in Doubt to Face Everton

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Speed in Doubt to Face Everton

Article excerpt

Byline: By Alan Oliver

Gary Speed missed Wales' 2-1 victory over Hungary in Budapest last night after being laid low with a stomach bug.

And this has put a question mark against the Newcastle United midfielder maintaining his 100 per cent Premiership record against his former club Everton at St James' Park on Saturday.

And this is the last thing Sir Bobby Robson wanted to hear as he waits for his international players to return to Tyneside for one single training session tomorrow before the visit of Everton.

Only Speed and keeper Shay Given have figured in every United Premiership game this season and while the manager is thinking about tinkering with his midfield on Saturday, the 34-year-old Welsh skipper will be the first name on his team sheet if he is fit.

Robson, like skipper Alan Shearer, is puzzled why a minority of United fans love to criticise Speed and so am I.

For while some other United players, especially in midfield, seem to be feeling the strain this season Speed has taken it all in his stride. …

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