Rafa Benitez has taken over at Newcastle United in an attempt to save The Magpies from relegation this season. While Spaniard’s successful history may be on his side, but the defeat against Leicester on Monday night must have given him a fair idea of the tough job he has signed for.
However, those who saw the game must have seen the obvious improvement for Newcastle from their days under Steve McClaran. Magpies showed some tactical understanding as well as few bright individual displays. Rafa would need the support from his players, which will help Newcastle stay up for another season.
Taking a note of the positives from Newcastle’s hard fought defeat vs. Leicester, we take a look at three players who will save Newcastle from being relegated this season.
Andres Townsend – The former Tottenham man looked sharp, decisive and dangerous going forward against The Foxes. Townsend’s wing play changed the game for Newcastle, and added a degree of X-factor, which they were missing until now.
With Mitrovic playing as the target man, if Townsend can keep his bright play in coming 9 matches, it will esnure another Premier League season for Newcastle and their fans.
Jonjo Shelvey – Newcastle’s captain vs. Leicester showed why Benitez had signed him all those years ago while in charge of Liverpool. Shelvey played in a deep-line playmaker role, and looked very comfortable.
We all knew his thunderous shooting ability from distance, but the way he controlled Newcastle’s midfield must have given a lot of hopes to Benitez in his bid to keep Newcastle up this season.
Georginio Wijnaldum – By far Newcastle’s best player this season started in the number 10 role vs. Leicester, but then slotted in to central midfield along side Shelvey. From that point on, Newcastle started to dominate the possession and created better chances.
Wijnaldum’s goal scoring prowess is known to everyone, but his ability to control the tempo and find his teammates was a positive sign for Benitez and was a boost to Newcastle’s hope of maintaining their Premier League status for at least another season.
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