Newcastle manager Eddie Howe has admitted that midfielder Joelinton may be dropped for Sunday’s Premier League match against Fulham after being arrested for drunk driving.
The Brazilian was pulled over by the police on Thursday morning and later charged; he is scheduled to appear in court later this month. Northumbria Police later confirmed the incident with the following statement:
“Shortly before 1.20am today (Thursday), officers pulled over a vehicle in the Ponteland Road area of Newcastle and arrested the occupant.”
“Joelinton Cassio, 26, of Ponteland, has since been charged with driving whilst above the prescribed limit for alcohol.
“He is due to appear before magistrates in Newcastle on January 26.”
Newcastle manager Eddie Howe revealed that the player is ‘upset’ and is ‘remorseful’ of his actions. When asked about how the player is coping with the situation, he said:
“It came very much as a shock. It’s a difficult situation.
“Joe is very remorseful, he was very upset yesterday. I think he knows the seriousness of the situation. Obviously I can’t go in to too much detail out of respect for the case, but I think he understands his responsibilities.
“We’re now in a position where we’re supporting him, and we also understand as a football club the seriousness of the situation.”
But when asked if he will be available for the upcoming match against Fulham, Howe said that he is yet to make a decision and hinted that he could drop the player. He said:
“I’m going to have to reflect and analyse on that and I’ll make a decision closer to the game in consultation with him, so I’m not 100 per cent sure.”
“My relationship with Joe is very good. I have sat down with him and will do so again. Ultimately, I have to pick the best team to win the game, that s my job, but I also have to take into account the situation around that.”
The 26-year-old has been an important member of Eddie Howe’s squad this season, making 21 appearances across all competitions, and will undoubtedly be missed.
The Toons will be taking on Fulham on Sunday and a win will take them to 38 points as they continue their exceptional quest to a top 4 finish.