Mohamed Diame started his first Premier League match for Newcastle on Monday.
With Mikel Merino out injured and Isaac Hayden carrying a knock, Diame played alongside Jonjo Shelvey in the centre of midfield.
Diame says he knew Monday was going to be difficult because Burnley are ‘running everywhere and fighting for every single ball’.
Nevertheless, the former Hull player claims that when working hard in training, Newcastle ‘have everything to do well against any team’.
Ironic considering it is only a few weeks ago when Jamaal Lascelles allegedly called Mohamed Diame ‘lazy’ in training, leading to a fight/scuffle’ and Jonjo Shelvey breaking his finger when helping to separate the pair.
Diame looked like he would at least have something more to offer than Ayoze Perez when replacing him in the final stages against Crystal Palace.
However, at Burnley we saw once again the very poor languid level from Mohamed Diame that we came to expect in the Championship.
In our interactive player ratings, along with Perez and Joselu, Diame was rated by far one of Newcastle’s weakest players on the pitch.
Earlier today, Rafa Benitez confirmed that Mikel Merino would miss Bournemouth through injury and that Jack Colback would continue to train with the kids, meaning his central midfield options for tomorrow are Shelvey, Hayden, Saivet, Diame, or if necessary, Chancel Mbemba.
Easy to guess which would be the only two the vast majority of Newcastle fans would want playing, with then Chancel Mbemba as third choice!
Diame does look as though he is capable of more but after proving that on only a very small handful of occasions so far, he has done nothing to push any claim for a start tomorrow.
Mohamed Diame talking to NUFC TV:
“It is still too early to talk about the position (in the table) but we are doing well.
“We try to do our stuff game after game.
“We know in this league, when you work hard in training we have everything here to do well against any team.
“We have to be focused on what we are doing, try to work hard.
“We knew it (Burnley) would be a difficult game, especially at Burnley where they are running everywhere and fighting for every single ball. We didn’t get the second ball most of the time, so a difficult game.
“Now it is over and we are looking forwards.
“We are home to Bournemouth, it is our fortress, and we need to do well. Really important this game because afterwards an international break, so important to leave with a win.
“Bournemouth always a good team, play good football. They have some good players up front, on the wing too, so it is going to be a difficult game.
“But we are at home and need to get the three points.”