It turns out that Claudio Cacapa is the only injury doubt before Newcastle manager Sam Allardyce names his squad for the important Sunderland derby on Saturday. The former Lyon defender was of course hauled off after just 18 minutes against Portsmouth.
However, the Newcastle boss revealed today that Cacapa was carrying a knock on Saturday, to do with his hamstring.
We wonder if that had anything to do with Cacapa being so easily brushed off the ball twice, in the first 11 minutes, that gave up two awful goals, in Saturday’s defeat to Portsmouth.
Claudio Cacapa - Sam says Brazilian was carrying a slight hamstring strain on Saturday
Maybe Claudio was hiding the extent of his injury, but if that’s the case, he now knows you cannot carry an injury like that in the Premier league. Maybe you can do that in the French League, but there’s just too much physical pressure in the game played in England. We’ll never know if Cacapa’s hamstring injury had anything to do with his disastrous performance on Saturday. To be fair to Claudio, before last Saturday he had looked very solid in the heart of the Newcastle defense.
Big Sam said today:
“Cacapa had a slight hamstring last week but he said he was perfectly OK in the last two days of training.”
“But he just looked labored to me, and of course by the time I’d decided to make the substitution, they’d scored three goals.”
As we mentioned, Cacapa had done very well before last Saturday and he’ll be very keen to prove his last performance was just a fluke, and that it will not happen again. We had thought Cacapa was one of Big Sam’s best acquisitions during the summer, and we certainly hope he will return to his best form. We’re gradually starting to get over the complete shock of Saturday’s first 11 minutes, so maybe Cacapa can come back to his very best form, sooner rather than later. Hopefully, things can only get better from now on.