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I can’t believe I’m writing this…

5 years ago

Yoan Gouffran has to start against Aston Villa on Saturday.

I can’t believe I have just written that…but there it is in black and white.

Another stellar performance against Wolves on Tuesday night, capped by a wonderful volley.

I jinxed Vurnon Anita the last time I wrote about a rejuvenated player, the Dutchman unlucky to be red carded on Saturday after being one of the very few to emerge with any credit from that 2-0 defeat.

However, his work rate and new/rediscovered dangerous goal scoring ability has to get him a game ahead of the competition, doesn’t it?

Meanwhile, elsewhere on the pitch Daryl Murphy was last night everything Mitrovic isn’t; mobile, unselfish and trying to play everyone in.

Against Aston Villa why doesn’t Rafa Benitez start with both Mitro and Murphy?

We could have a battering ram forward line, something we haven’t seen since Shearer and Big Dunc!

Murphy could do what he was doing last night, drawing defenders to him, while Mitro gets the space he needs to score.

Ayoze Perez is good, only problem being that it has to be on his day…and if it isn’t his day, he packs it in. Which is exactly the type of player we don’t need against our friends from Birmingham.

I could see Matt Ritchie putting in cross after cross for the two big guys on top of plenty of corners and free-kicks.

For me it’s got to be 4-4-2 against Villa, although I am not Rafa I just hope he get his selection right – not like he did against Wolves at the weekend!

Hopefully I haven’t jinxed my new favourite player (love an underdog) and we have a great weekend after beating Villa.

Here are the stats from BBC Sport:

Newcastle 2 Wolves 0

Goals – 

Newcastle: Ritchie 29, Gouffran 31

Possession was Wolves 44% Newcastle 56%

Total shots were Wolves 4 Newcastle 13

Shots on target were Wolves 3 Newcastle 4

Corners were Wolves 9 Newcastle 5

Newcastle starting 11:

Darlow, Yedlin, Clark, Hanley, Lazaar, Gouffran (Atsu 75), Colback, Shelvey, Ritchie (Lascelles 85), Diame (Perez 72), Murphy

Unused Subs:

Woodman, Dummett, Hayden, Mitrovic

Referee: Andy Woolmer

Crowd: 34,735



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