Two years sago in pre-season and in the first few games of that season in 2014 Rolando Aarons looked terrific and we thought here’s a real emerging star at Newcastle.
But injuries, mostly hamstring injuries, have prevented him from playing too many games since then and he has appeared only 17 times for Newcastle with 3 goals over the last two years.
Rafa Benitez with Rolando Aarons
The Jamaican-born 20 year-old seemed to recover towards the end of last season and against Spurs in that last game in the second half he looked great.
He scored one and then made one for Daryl Janmaat towards the end of the game, as we got that terrific 5-1 win.
Rolando has had a good pre-season with Rafa Benitez seeming to see his vast potential – and he has been talking to NufcTV:
“It has felt such a short pre-season, it’s gone through quite fast. It’s been hard but decent as well.”
“Spurs was obviously a good way to go out despite the disappointment of being relegated. We ended on a high and we are looking to start the campaign the way we ended the last one.”
“It was a frustrating season for me obviously. Not having many games and playing in a different position – but it was nice to play in my position at the end and grab a goal.”
“So the manager knows what I can do and hopefully get a chance this season to play more games in my position and impact on games.”
“I have had a decent pre-season again and this year I’m just looking to take it into the season. Get a run of games and show what you can do.”
“This is obviously a big year with more games, so Rafa Benitez is going to have to use more players and that means more opportunities.”
“Not just for me – but Jamie Sterry, Adam Armstrong and a lot of other players who don’t get a chance when we only have one game every week.”
It’s a big opportunity for Rolando this season – and it looks like he may get the start at Fulham next Friday night when we kick-off the Championship season.
And we expect him to start again this afternoon when SBV Vitesse visit St. James’ Park for our final friendly game of the summer.
Having Rolando Aarons in top form and injury-free in the coming season would help Newcastle an awful lot in getting one of those aromatic promotion spots.