SIEM de Jong has put himself in the frame for a comeback against Tottenham Hotspur.
The Newcastle United forward played 45 minutes for the club’s Under-21s at St James’s Park tonight.
De Jong – who had surgery after suffering a collapsed lung in February – captained Peter Beardsley’s side against Derby County in front of watching head coach John Carver, who was sat with managing director Lee Charnley.
The 26-year-old – who had an operation on a torn thigh muscle earlier this season – showed some neat touches in United’s midfield.
De Jong, signed from Ajax last summer, was substituted at the break by Beardsley with the score goalless.
On-loan striker Facundo Ferreyra, yet to play a competitive first-team game for Newcastle nine months after joining from Shakhtar Donetsk, replaced de Jong to make his own comeback from the back problem which has sidelined him in recent months.
He’s a top player – creative and goalsoring – and we need one of those in the team. Fingers crossed, he might be coming back at the right time.John Carver
Second-half goals from Alefe Santos and Farrend Rawson gave Derby a 2-0 victory in the Under-21 Premier League match.
Carver will now speak to de Jong to see if he is ready to be considered for Sunday’s Premier League home game against Tottenham.
“He’s a top player – creative and goalsoring – and we need one of those in the team,” said Carver. “Fingers crossed, he might be coming back at the right time.”
De Jong made three appearances for Newcastle early this season before succumbing to injury.
NEWCASTLE UNITED: Woolston, Sterry, Laidler (Campbell, 75), Kemen, Williams, Gillesphey, Gilliead, Smith, Armstrong, de Jong (Ferreyra, 46), Roberts (Barlaser, 75). Subs not used: Pearson, Heardman.