DARYL Janmaat WILL start against Manchester City in Newcastle United’s opening game of the season.
The defender made his debut in last night’s 2-2 draw against Huddersfield Town.
Janmaat - who reported back for pre-season training later than most of his team-mates because of his involvement in Holland’s World Cup campaign - is playing catch up with his fitness.
But United manager Alan Pardew is confident Janmaat will be ready to start against City at St James’s Park on August 17.
Janmaat, signed from Feyenoord for £5m last month, played 55 minutes at the John Smith’s Stadium.
And the 24-year-old will be given a longer run-out in the club’s final pre-season friendly, Sunday’s home game against Real Sociedad.
“He is a class act,” said Pardew. “He will play for us against Man City - there’s no doubt about that.
“He had 60 minutes, and hopefully he’ll get 80 on Sunday and he’ll be ready to go.”
Janmaat is a direct replacement for Mathieu Debuchy, who joined Arsenal this summer.
The Huddersfield game came after back-to-back fixtures in Germany over the weekend.
Newcastle, beaten by eventual tournament winners Malaga on Saturday, overcame host club Shalke 04 3-1 at the Veltins Arena in Gelsenkirchen on Sunday.
Reflecting on the Huddersfield game, Pardew said: “I thought we looked a little bit tired from the weekend.
“We’ve had three games in four days, and that’s tough on any team.
“But there was good spirit and bits of quality here and there. It was in fits and starts a little bit.
“You can see we’ve got good players in good areas.
“Certainly, we knew the weekend would be tough for the teams involved, and it was. Back to back games are tough.
“We took this game on the Tuesday as we just felt it would be good to play under fatigue.
“I thought we coped with it quite well, because Huddersfield had some good players.”