Ironically, the one player who could be pleased with his contribution last night against Portland Timbers’ second team, Rolando Aarons, says that he wasn’t happy with his overall performance.

As the rest of the team floundered, Aarons put the first goal on a plate for new boy Georginio Wijnaldum (watch HERE) and then scored two corkers of his own.

Yet whilst he was happy to score (see Aarons’ superb overhead kick HERE) and create, Rolando Aarons says goals are immaterial in friendlies and he is only interested in performing well and showing he is back to full fitness.

Despite being United’s most dangerous player, the winger was pushed back to left-back in the first half, saying that ‘if I have to do it, I have to do it’ and that he plays where Steve McClaren tells him to.

Clearly not happy about having to play there and aware that he may be facing the threat of further signings in his true position, Rolando Aarons playing in a makeshift defence pre season is one thing but surely he wouldn’t be wasted there again in a competitive match?

Rolando Aarons speaking to NUFC TV:

“I’m pleased with my contribution but my overall performance I’m not happy about.

“As a team I’m sure we’re not too happy about our performance as well but obviously we are not used to playing on Astroturf  – not that it’s an excuse – but you can tell that they play on it a lot.”

We are Premier League:

“Today we didn’t start well enough or competed well enough and it kind of showed. We are a Premier League team and should have done a lot better.

“It (left-back) is not a position I am used to playing but I’m a Newcastle United player and I play for Steve McClaren, wherever he puts me I’m going to play – I’m going to do my job first thing. Obviously I prefer to play on the wing and that is my natural position but if I have to do it, I have to do it.”

rolando aarons

Question: ‘Not many players would say they weren’t happy with their performance after two goals and an assist?’

“For me pre season is not about getting on the scoresheet, as much as getting back to my fitness, performing well, because when the season starts the performances are going to be the big thing.

“Players are coming in as well, so I have to keep pushing and pushing. I’m happy with my contribution but I feel I could have played a lot better than what I did.”