Malcolm Macdonald claims Ryan Fraser ‘used’ Newcastle United to get fit for Euro 2020
Malcolm Macdonald has told Chronicle Live that Ryan Fraser ‘used’ Newcastle United to get fit for Euro 2020.
Fraser made his first appearance since March to feature for Scotland in their pre-tournament friendly with the Netherlands on Wednesday. The winger had missed the final nine games of the Premier League season after requiring surgery on a groin injury.
The issue, sustained on international duty, added to a lengthy list of absences for the 17-cap forward since joining Newcastle. He had already missed seven games with hamstring and groin problems following a free transfer from Bournemouth last summer.
Steve Bruce warned Scotland head coach Steve Clarke that it would be a ‘gamble’ to select Fraser for Euro 2020. The Toon boss insisted the £42,000-per-week forward desperately needed a rest so he can make a bigger impact next season.
Fraser’s issues restricted the 27-year-old to start just nine of his 18 Premier League games for the Magpies. He also failed to score a single goal and offered two of his three assists in 2020.
Macdonald has now hit out at Fraser in his column for Chronicle Live, and branded his debut Newcastle season a disaster.
“Jeff Hendrick has been a disaster and Ryan Fraser equally so because of attitude rather than ability,” Macdonald wrote. “He has used Newcastle to get fit for the Euros.
“He never played for United in the last 11 weeks of the season. Going from an international appearance for Scotland in March, to their friendly against Holland this, week when he miraculously appeared and played for almost half an hour.”
TBR’s view: Newcastle will share Fraser frustrations
Fraser’s debut season at Newcastle was certainly a disaster like Macdonald suggests. He failed to offer Bruce any consistent impact and spent almost as much time off the field than on it.
Newcastle would have been desperate for Fraser to have the summer off so that he could put his injury problems in the past. Instead, they risk being left even more frustrated should he aggravate his issue at Euro 2020.
Bruce was already vocal about Fraser needing the time off to recharge the batteries. Now, he will fear being without the forward again next season. And Fraser cannot afford to have another off-season at St James’ Park having shown little reason why he was signed.