Mapou gets armband in Newcastle Untied’s testing tie

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MAPOU Yanga-Mbiwa will be tasked with leading Newcastle United into the third round of the Capital One Cup tonight.

Yanga-Mbiwa will be handed the captain’s armband at Morecambe – a move which suggests regular skipper Fabricio Coloccini will be among those rested for the second-round tie against the League Two club.

Yanga-Mbiwa, signed in January, captained former club Montpellier in their Ligue 1 title-winning campaign the season before last.

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew is looking to lean on his leadership qualities now he has a grasp of the English language.

“Mapou will captain the team,” Pardew said. “He has those (leadership) qualities, and we want to use them.”

Newcastle have a dismal record in the domestic cups under Pardew, and the game was chosen for live broadcast given its potential for a giant killing.

And Yanga-Mbiwa and his team-mates face a potentially challenging night at the seaside town.

“Newcastle away at Morecambe is a potential giant killing, and of course that’s why they have highlighted it for TV,” said Pardew.

“There is a reason for that. There’s great potential for them in that it could be a shock.

“It’s great for Morecambe – they’ll be really up for it.

“An old mentor of mine said that if you beat any top-flight team you should be out celebrating because it’s a tough ask at any level.

“It’s a game where we need to make sure our quality comes through and our technical level. If it comes down to just a physical game, we’ll lose.”