With each passing day, COVID-19 tightens its grip around Europe and by effect, the footballing world.
An eerily similar domino effect seems to be in motion with games getting delayed or postponed just like last season.
Despite all this, the Premier League board refuses to signal for a break in games or increase the number of substitutions, much to the dismay of fans and managers alike.
How does one respond to this hesitancy?
Well, Newcastle United appears to have conjured up a rather innovative solution ensuring that their fixture against Everton ends up getting delayed.
It all occurred during Newcastle’s thrilling 1-1 draw against Manchester United.
The game itself saw a determined Newcastle side grab a much-deserved point against an abysmal United.
However, the point didn’t come without some key sacrifices.
Crucial players such as Callum Wilson, Ryan Fraser and most notably Allan Saint-Maximin all went off due to injuries during the game.
An already handicapped Newcastle bench featuring 2 goalkeepers was stretched even thinner.
With key players injured alongside the many COVID related absences, the already uncertain nature of Newcastle’s trip to Goodison Park became even vaguer.
However, the status was about to become clearer than ever as a possible moment of ingenuity granted Newcastle the grounds to appeal for the postponement of their next fixture.
Magpies fullback Javier Manquillo picked up a yellow card for some classic time-wasting in the 94th minute, and aside from running down some valuable seconds off the clock, the yellow card meant that the Spaniard would be unavailable for selection in the next game due to the accumulation of 5 yellow cards.
The card was as blatant as they come, the Spaniard essentially took the ball with him instead of giving it back for a throw-in.
While the incident could simply be an accident or a moment of genius achieved by sh*ithousery, one thing’s for sure, Newcastle picked up a valuable point and now get some extra time for rest and recovery.
Manquillo’s 95th minute yellow for time wasting that earned him a suspension 🤌🏻#EddieHowesBlackAndWhiteTacticalSuspensionsArmy— Martin Stewart (@megamarvatron) December 28, 2021
I’ll be slightly disappointed if Manquillo doesn’t get a statue now for his tactical yellow card haha. #NUFC— Evan Kiropoulos (@evan_kiropoulos) December 29, 2021