Newcastle boss expecting big things from Mitrovic

Aleksander Mitrovic
Aleksander Mitrovic

Aleksandar Mitrovic will be in from the cold against Everton.

And Steve McClaren is hoping for a hot streak in front of goal from the Serbian striker.

He has bullied defenders – he did that against Chelsea.

Papiss Cisse has been leading the line for Newcastle United during their recent three-game unbeaten spell.

But the striker is expected to miss the visit of Roberto Martinez’s Everton side on Boxing Day with a groin injury, amid fears he could miss the entire festive season.

Mitrovic - who replaced Cisse after 33 minutes in the 1-1 draw with Aston Villa - is set to lead the line.

McClaren has challenged refreshed Mitrovic to add to his tally of three goals, adding he has all the ingredients to be a top striker.

And the club’s head coach wants to see him start to “pull it all together” quickly and make a big impact for a Newcastle side battling relegation.

“[Mitro] needed to come out for a few games,” said McClaren.

“He’s done that now and has his focus and energy and intensity back.

“He has shown that in the last two games.

“He has bullied defenders – he did that against Chelsea.

“That’s what we want from him.

“He needs to hold that emotion and control it, but we should never take the aggression out of his game.

“There are a lot of things he has to work on and get right.

“He’s got talent and all the ingredients, he just needs to pull it all together.

“We’re hoping he can make an impact this season, the quicker the better.

“He’s been boosted by the goal he got at Spurs.

“You don’t know with young players, we’re just hoping he has those spells where he is very effective.

“He needs to score more goals, yes, but he was bought as a development and someone with potential, and that’s how he’s playing at the moment.”