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News and Commentary On Newcastle United By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

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Benitez Hints Forgotten Man Can Still Help Newcastle

9:24 am, Saturday, August 20th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 9 Comments

Rafa Benitez didn’t have Yoan Gouffran in the 18 man squads for the first two games of the season, which ended in two defeats.

But on Wednesday night the Frenchman, who has been frustrated these last couple of years playing very few games for us, started the game against Reading on the wing and he put in a good performance and worked his socks off for the side.

He contributed to two of the goals and almost scored himself with an acrobatic overhead kick in the first half.

yoan gouffran - had good game

Yoan Gouffran in action on Wednesday night

And when Yoan was brought off late in the game, he got warm applause for his efforts from the Geordie crowd.

Rafa has talked about Yoan and hints that he could still do a job for the team this season as the Frenchman seems well suited to life in the Championship – he gets stuck in and works like a trojan.

This is what Rafa has said:

“I said after the game that he was doing well every day in training,” “He was doing well for me and doing his job.”

“He’s a player that’s available and training well.” “He’s under contract, so nothing has changed.” “He’s a player that I like. He’s a very good professional.”

“Still we have to wait, but I’m very pleased with him.”

“I was watching him as a striker and then he had to play as a winger and a midfielder.” “He was not very happy because he was not playing very well.”

“The perception outside was that maybe he was not as good as he could be.” “We know it’s not ideal for him, because he’s a striker, but he works very hard so he can play as a winger.”

“He can help.”

Yoan could still leave in the next 11 days, because he has only one year left on his contract, but he would be a very good squad player this season and he could do a job for Newcastle as he showed on Wednesday night.

Yoan works hard and seems to like playing under Benitez, who understands his frustrations after appearing only 9 times last season.

We’d be happy enough if Rafa keeps him for the coming season, even if that means he becomes a free agent next summer and leaves the club for nothing.

Getting promoted next May and getting back into the big bucks of the Premier League is far more important than losing one or two million this summer on one of our players.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Tags: Coaching · Contracts · Management · Newcastle News · Other News · Premier League · Transfer News and Rumours · Yoan Gouffran

9 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Lindisfarne // Aug 20, 2016 at 9:30 AM

    Gouffran, our little lucky charm!
    A Good Luck Gouf perhaps?!

  • 2 Laurent Robert 32 // Aug 20, 2016 at 9:36 AM

    As I said post-match, I was one of the minority who was pleased for Gouffran to get a game on Wednesday, and I thought he did OK to say he hasn’t been involved too much.

    He’s got some pace, quite comfortable with the ball at his feet and has has decent power with his shots. He was previously used as another Jonas babysitter mk2 endlessly running laps up and down in a straight line under. Hardly playing him in a worthwhile position.

    He wasn’t up front, but neither a babysitter straight line lap runner either.

    The team is a lot better structured now even with a lot of development still to go. There isn’t the same mammoth gaps between the whole team sitting back and then having Cisse up by himself in no man’s land.

    Rafa has already said Gouffran is a good professional in training, which is good to hear. I hope he can contribute in more games as I’d like his to do well.

  • 3 geordie157 // Aug 20, 2016 at 9:42 AM

    He’s a useful squad player with a year left on his contract, so I think he’s with keeping this season.

    Any news on riviere, bigi, ameobi, vuckic leaving?

  • 4 Lindisfarne // Aug 20, 2016 at 9:44 AM

    I’ll get my coat – thanks LR32

  • 5 Hail Wor Ashley // Aug 20, 2016 at 9:44 AM

    From that I take it he won’t be payed as CM under Rafa, which is a step in the right direction.

    Not going to bother guessing Rafa’s team, could be no changes, could be as many as 5, suppose that’s an added benefit of having a big squad and a manger that rotates, the opposition will have difficulty preparing.

    Perhaps that was an overlooked factor in how our attacks became so predictable in recent seasons, therefore easy to prepare to defend against with a stack of footage at our opponents disposal and little to no changes week in week out.

  • 6 Lindisfarne // Aug 20, 2016 at 9:50 AM


    Lets start small and work up….who should be in goal, Sels or Darlow?

  • 7 Hail Wor Ashley // Aug 20, 2016 at 9:56 AM


    Well Darlow should’ve started the season in goal for me, but Sels is there and is obviously going to continue. Hopefully he’ll start to show a bit more and make unexpected saves that are as good as a goal.

  • 8 The overrated Frenchman // Aug 20, 2016 at 10:00 AM

    Well Darlow for me. Not top drawer, but I just feel he’s more solid than Sels who looks like a perpetual accident waiting to happen, in the best tradition of continental keepers. They typically seem like they have a bit of a screw loose or something.

  • 9 loonie-toon // Aug 20, 2016 at 10:38 AM

    Benteke to palace

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