Newcastle United may not have played the prettiest football when they lost to West Ham United on a night when they should have rotated, but they definitely have been playing some eye-catching ball as of late.
And that has come down to the synergy between the starting lineups. For some reason, Miguel Amiron makes Ayoze Perez better, and while I’d say that Perez is good in his own way and in his own right, Almiron seems to be getting some good ball out of him. This, of course, is making Salomon Rondon’s job much easier. With creation behind, and quality on the ball, Rondon can do what Rondon does best, which is get open and try to score goals.
The wins by Newcastle were bound to end sometime, and it’s a shame it had to come at the cost of our starting lineup. If Rafa had made the decision to rotate, he would have gotten flak for not starting the hot group, but now, we have to deal with a loss under our belts, and an upcoming rotated side.
But that doesn’t mean this isn’t some of the most exciting football that Newcastle has produced in a long time. Just watching Miguel Almiron play against Huddersfield was a delight as he created chance after chance for the magpies. Even better was watching his linkup play with Perez and creating chances for Rondon. This is an absolute number ten that we’re witnessing here.
The backfield of Longstaff and Hayden had me buzzing until Longstaff’s injury, however, this means that we may get to see other great players in the midfield like Shelvey, who should be back very soon. Isaac Hayden and Longstaff created beautiful football that made the match more enjoyable to watch.
Rafa Benitez had come under fire for not playing more attacking football, which nowadays is what is truly eye-catching for fans. Fans love watching attacking based football because it’s faster paced, and higher scores are more fun than 0-0 draws. But Rafa didn’t possess the kinds of players that could generate that kind of play. It was known he had to play to not lose.
Now? We’re playing to win. The players are getting forward and taking risks and chances. Miguel Almiron is generating opportunities and our defense has even been solid enough to hold the line when midfield moves upfield. The overall play of the club has increased greatly over the span of a season, and it makes me confident that not only will the club avoid a drop, but that they may grab a solid amount of points before the season’s over.
I’m super excited to see what this football team has in store, because, for the first time in years, I’m truly enjoying watching the ability of the players on the pitch. We have talent right now, and it makes for an exciting time for Newcastle fans anywhere.