We saw some good performances from the Newcastle players last night, and especially in the second half, which is reminiscent back in the early days when Rafa first arrived.
The team always seemed to improve in the second half and that’s probably because Rafa reads the game well and adjusts the team at half time.
We had three players stand out as our best players last night and it just so happens they are all new players brought in by Rafa during the summer.
Matt Ritchie is our Man of the Match
It’s the third time in a row for Matt and this time he got 33% of the vote.
This player is fast becoming a favorite on Tyneside with his skill and his attitude. He scored the penalty after 50 minutes which he put away expertly and just watch his reaction – he kills a corner flag.
This lad was a star last season for Bournemouth in the Premier League and he is only going to get better under the tutelage of Rafa Benitez.
It’s also not lost on supporters that he left the Premier League to join the Magpies.
Matt replaced Andros Townsend, so we shouldn’t miss the former Tottenham winger too much this season.
Isaac Hayden is second in the voting with 29% of the vote and he seems to be improving already under Rafa Benitez.
He has started every game so far in one of the holding midfield positions.
It seems Rafa has seen something in this former Arsenal youngster and he scored his first goal for the club last night and he took it really well after 20 minutes.
He went close in the second half too when the goalkeeper blocked his chipped shot, so he is starting to add some goals to his game and he could become a big star at Newcastle this season.
Isaac was a terrific buy from the Gunners for a measly £2.5M.
Dwight Gayle scored two goals last night and he is third in the voting with 25% of the vote.
Dwight now has three of Newcastle’s first five goals this season and he is off to a good start on Tyneside.
His first goal was simply a magnificent strike from a free kick after 69 minutes and he was where he needed to be after 89 minutes to slot home his second and Newcastle’s fourth.
This lad wears the number 9 shirt and he seems to be inspired by it; we can see Dwight getting a stack of goals for us this season with this lightening quick play and his eye for goal.
We have to mention Yoan Gouffran (5% of vote and 4th in voting) and he was singled out by Rafa in his interview after the game.
Yoan almost scored a spectacular goal in the first half and he worked his socks off last night and it’s not been a good time for Yoan over the last two years.
He got good applause from the Geordie fans when he was replaced near the end of the game and this player can give us something in games in the Championship; we now hope he doesn’t leave this month.
He is a good example to younger players because of his attitude and work ethic in training and in the games.
Well done Yoan.