Newcastle fans will have noticed it – Dwight Gayle is starting to score goals for us again and he scored a nice one on Saturday against Wigan to put us ahead in that game – and even before that was close with another good attempt.
When players return from injury it does take a number of games for them to get fully match fit and sharp again and we are seeing Dwight do exactly that.
He now has 22 Championship goals this season, just two goals behind Leeds United Chris Wood, but Dwight has needed only 92 minutes of playing time for each goal compared to Chris’ 125 minutes.
Dwight Gayle scoring on Saturday
And manager Rafa Benitez has said that he sees Dwight improving in every training session – that has to be great news for Newcastle fans.
This is what Rafa has said about his striker, as reported in the Shields Gazette today:
“He’s getting better with every training session.”
“You need match fitness. He’s improving. “The more he trains in the coming weeks, he’ll get even better.”
“When you have all the players available, you can mange things easier if you see players tiring.”
“We have another game soon, and it’s good to have fresh legs.”
Newcastle are now even better positioned for promotion than we were before Saturday’s games and we are now 10 points above 3rd placed Huddersfield, who have a game in hand.
Since we beat the Terriers they have lost three of their last four games and seem to be feeling the pressure at the top.
When we beat them 3-1 on 4th March, it was their first defeat in their previous 8 league games and they had won 7 of those and drawn only one – 22 points from a possible 24.
But they have only 3 points from their last 5 games and that has given Newcastle some breathing room at the top.
In our last 5 games we haven’t done very well, but still managed to pick up 8 points and gain 5 points on the Terriers.
We now have to beat a tough Burton Albion side on Wednesday night and they beat Huddersfield 1-0 on Saturday, so we have been duly warned.
Howay The Lads!!