One player who looks a better player than last season is our new signing, 25-year-old Christian Atsu who we signed from Chelsea for just £6.2M in June.
Christian has had a good pre-season, and it seems he will be a starter against Tottenham Hotspur next Sunday.
Not only has Atsu been prominent on the wing but he has also scored two goals in the final two pre-season games.
Atsu will become a much better player if he can add more goals to his game and he’s threatened to do that in pre-season.
Atsu also listens very carefully to Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez who he has often said is an excellent coach and one of the best in the world.
Christian Atsu – 25-year-old Newcastle right winger
You cannot go too far wrong f you are a good player and want Rafa Benitez to help you improve your game.
After scoring early on yesterday in the good 2-0 win over Verona at St. James’ Park in out the final game of the pre-season Christian he had this to say on the Newcastle website yesterday:
“I always want to do something to help the team move forward. I try to work hard and I want to be better than last season.”
“We know what is ahead of us – its bigger than what we passed through last season – and we just need to keep working hard and be better players, each and every day,” he told nufc.co.uk.
“I think I’m more focussed, and I’m also listening to Rafa Benítez. His advice has been very important to me, and my teammates have also been very supportive too. We’re all working together.”
“With him, I think I’m improving. I just need to keep working hard and keep trying to help the team each and every game. Now there is big competition in the team, and you can’t underrate any player.”
“I just need to keep working hard and try to do something for the team.”
“We are working hard and we are becoming a better team. We are understanding each other on the field and we are also a very strong team to beat.”
“They were a very good team. Italian clubs are very difficult to beat, so we’re very happy that we created a lot of chances and also won the game.”
“We were compact, we understand each other and we broke their defence up and managed to score two goals. We created a lot of chances and kept a clean sheet, so we’re happy with that.
“To win a game, we have to create those chances – if we don’t create them, we won’t win. ” “That’s a positive thing for the whole team, so now we have to keep working and build on that.”
“We are prepared. For me, any minute that I play I’ll give my best for the team and do my job on the field.” “I believe the team is well prepared for the season ahead, no matter what happens.”
“The Premier League is coming, we’re happy to be there and we have to keep working hard and improve because the Premier League is very difficult, with more quality.
“But I believe in the players that we have and our game plan. We just need to stick to it, and keep fighting until the end.”
Yesterday, it certainly looked like the Newcastle team are now ready for the Premier League although it’s difficult to know how we’ll do.
But we do have one of the best managers in the world, and we have enough good players right now to finish the league in mid-table.
If we can get three good players in by the end of the month, we could finish even higher than that.
Whatever Paul Merson may think (he thinks we’ll finish 4th bottom) we firmly believe Newcastle can surprise a lot of pundits in the coming season.
Howay The Lads!!