Matt Ritchie is the man of the moment after his excellent display at his former club Bournemouth on Saturday.
And Matt’s goal after 94 minutes to equalize the scores at 2-2 could be a candidate for the Premier League goal of the season.
And Rafa Benitez’ future is still a concern for Newcastle fans and maybe the players too.
His three-year contract runs out in the summer, and he will not discuss a new contract until Newcastle are safe – we are 5 points off the 40 points mark.
Rafa Benitez giving instructions to Matt Ritchie
Here’s what Matt has said about Rafa as reported in talkSPORT today:
“He’s very good.”
“It’s massive that he does stay now, especially at the moment with the unrest among the fans.”
“There’s no better man for the club. He’s seen everything.”
“He’s been everywhere in football. He’s seen the highs and lows and he doesn’t ride with them.”
“He’s always in the same mood. That spreads throughout the whole team and the whole club.”
“We started really poorly this season and not once did the manager panic.”
“I understand the frustrations but, at the same time, it did start to affect the atmosphere around the stadium,”
“That’s no criticism towards the fans because they’ve been fantastic and I understand the unrest.”
“But support is what the team needs.”
We have had two poor spells under Rafa in the last two seasons – this season we started with only three draws in the first 10 games with no wins.
And last season we went 9 successive games with only a single point from those games.
But through those terrible spells, Rafa kept everybody supporting the team, and we pulled out of both nosedives.
That’s only one reason he is the perfect manager for Newcastle.