After Joelinton’s arrest for drunk driving, Newcastle manager Eddie Howe may decide to bench the Brazilian midfielder against Fulham on Sunday in the Premier League.
The 26-year-old, who has grown to be an important part of Howe’s in-form team, was pulled over by police in the early hours of Thursday and then charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated.
He is available for Sunday’s game even though he must go before municipal magistrates later this month. Joelinton’s participation against Fulham was a question that Howe was asked at his pre-game press conference on Friday. Howe’s response was, “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 percent sure.
“We get along great, me and Joe. I’ve had him over, and I will have him over again. My responsibility is to choose the squad that will win the game, but I also have to consider the circumstances.” Joelinton struggled to score goals after joining German club Hoffenheim in 2019 for a then-club-record £40 million. But under Howe, whose team is third in the Premier League, the South American has been a regular, scoring his team’s second goal in their 2-0 League Cup quarterfinal victory over Leicester on Tuesday.
Howe, who made it known that Joelinton was eager to play, said: “It came as a huge shock. It’s a challenging circumstance. Joe was quite unhappy yesterday and feels terrible about it. He may be aware of how terrible the issue is. I can’t go into too much detail, obviously, out of respect for the matter, but I believe he is aware of his obligations. As a football club, we recognize the gravity of the situation and are now in a position to support him.”