Jonjo Shelvey came back into the side this past weekend, and it paid big dividends for the struggling Newcastle team. His ability to pick a pass and with set-pieces made him an inspired choice for a side that had shown little threat on goal this season.
Steve Bruce made the following comments about the 27-year-old after his West Ham performance:
“I just thought Jonjo, if we needed a pass, could give a pass. With set-pieces, he’s made one and scored one.
“Always, in the back of my mind, I knew he was a West Ham fan, so this is a stage he wants to play on. He was very good, he’s got to maintain it. I got the decision right.”
Jonjo joined Newcastle from Swansea in January of 2016 on a five and a half year deal. That deal is continuing to wind its way down, leaving Jonjo as one of many current Magpies whose contracts are set to expire in the summer of 2021.
However, we would have thought that Jonjo would be behind a few of his teammates in getting a new deal sorted out. Jonjo has not featured consistently at Newcastle since the 2017-18 season due to a variety of reasons.
While last season he was hampered with a thigh injury; this season, he failed to secure his starting place after the first two games.
With Fabian Schar, Isaac Hayden, and Matt Ritchie all having their deals expire at the same time as Shelvey, it would seem logical that Newcastle would try to tie down those three before Jonjo.
However, the Northern Echo have a surprising report that it is, in fact, Shelvey who will be the next to get a new contract at Newcastle.
The report states that Shelvey is close to signing an extension. If true, this is somewhat of a shock due to his inconsistent form. He also is one of the top earners at the club and could also fetch a decent fee in the January window.
There is reportedly interest in Shelvey from not only West Ham but Crystal Palace as well. However, Jonjo is settled in the North East and has always maintained his desire to continue as a Magpie.
The report states that it is a growing priority for Newcastle to get the likes of Fabian Schar, Isaac Hayden, and Matt Ritchie on new deals in addition to Shelvey. They also remain diligent in getting both Longstaff brothers tied down for years to come.
Martin Dubravka was signed up on a new six-year contract a couple of weeks ago. There was speculation whether that would spark a procession of new deals after the first one was completed. We’ll see if Shelvey is the next domino to fall and how quickly the club can get some of these key players tied down.