Yoan Gouffran was hardly used last season when he appeared only 8 times with 3 starts and 5 sub appearances.
Yoan had no goals and no assists in those 8 appearances.
Contrast that after two months of this season when Yoan has already appeared 9 times (more than last season) with 8 starts and he’s scored 3 goals and has two assists.
What a transformation!
Yoan Gouffran in action for Newcastle
And the stats are only part of the story, because Yoan he has scored a couple of fabulous goals – one of them direct from a corner against Derby County, so it’s not like his goals are tap-ins either.
And of course he headed in the equalizer against Norwich after 95 minutes last Wednesday night.
It’s the story of the season so far and as well as having good stats, Yoan always works his socks off for the side and Rafa Benitez obviously is very comfortable with him in the side.
Call Yoan the comeback kid who is in the final year of his four and a half year deal, since he signed on for us back in January, 2013 when Moussa Sissoko also signed for the club.
Gouffran’s fine form this season is first of all a testament to his strong character that he could come back after two years out of the limelight – especially after last season – which was an utter disaster for the club and completely self-inflicted.
Credit also has to go to manager Rafa Benitez for helping Yoan get some of his confidence back.
It started last season when Yoan appeared on the bench for Rafa because the manager liked his attitude in training and the fact that he gave 100%.
This could still be Yoan’s last season at the club, but the way he will be remembered by fans will be a lot different than it would have been had he left Newcastle last summer.
Yoan has a chance to get his name down in the annals of Newcastle’s history by being in the side and even being one of the stars of what we hope is a promotion season for the club.
If he does that then Yoan will be fondly remembered for his gutsy comeback that was helped by the astute man-management and terrific coaching of Rafa Benitez.
These days positive stuff is hard to come by, but hey – this could become a great story for the Frenchman and for Newcastle too.