Newcastle United flop is two goal hero and lifts Europa League trophy on Friday night
Friday night saw Luuk de Jong the hero.
The former Newcastle United flop, the key man, as Sevilla lifted the Europa League trophy.
Having earlier scored the winner for Sevilla to knock Manchester United out of Europe, he was at it again.
Former Man Utd striker Lukaku gave Inter Milan the lead after only five minutes from the penalty spot.
However, the former Newcastle loan striker took Sevilla right back into the game, scoring in the 12th and 33rd minute.
A very open final though saw Inter hit straight back to make it 2-2 in the 35th minute.
As well as the goals, Luuk de Jong worked tirelessly for his team right up until he was subbed with five minutes of normal time remaining.
By that time, Sevilla had regained a deserved lead that their fearless attacking play deserved.
On 74 minutes a superb Silva overhead kick was heading just wide, only for Lukaku to deflect it into his own net.
The Spanish side pretty comfortably seeing out the remaining 16 minutes plus six minutes added time.
It was a sixth Europa League final for Sevilla in 15 years, they have won all six.
For 29 year old Luuk de Jong it was a great end to what had been a pretty disappointing season personally for the Dutch international, having scored only seven goals in 44 games (all competitions) before that semi-final goal against and defeat of Man Utd.
What could have been at Newcastle United…?
Luuk de Jong (pictured on the left above) arrived at Newcastle United during the very eventful 2013/14 season.
Mike Ashley refused to allow any players to be bought in an 18 month period stretching from January 2013 to June 2014, yet bizarrely things fell so well in the first half of 2013/14.
The loan deal for Loic Remy was a massive hit as he scored 10 goals in his first 15 Premier League starts up to and including Boxing Day 2013, a very decent midfield and attacking unit coming together with Cabaye pulling the strings and the likes of Tiote, Sissoko (honestly!), Ben Arfa and Gouffran, along with attacking full-backs Santon and Debuchy, performing to a high standard.
Mike Ashley then sold Yohan Cabaye for £20m in January 2014 and it all collapsed. Selling your best player mid-season when you are doing so well, took all the optimism, momentum and morale out of the team. Newcastle only won four games in that second half of the season and ended it with seven defeats in the final eight PL matches.
Ashley refused to allow any of the £20m to be spent in that January 2014 window, instead, only Luuk de Jong arrived on loan as Cabaye departed.
Scoring goals for fun at Twente in Holland had got a 21 year old Luuk de Jong a £10m move to Borussia Monchengladbach, but after 18 months of struggling to make a mark, he came to Newcastle for a new start on loan.
After eight starts and four sub appearances, Newcastle fans were less than impressed. Luuk de Jong looked really poor but under the management of Alan Pardew maybe no surprise. Pardew failing to play to the striker’s strenghs.
That summer saw Newcastle instead sign the goalscoring genius that was Emmanuel Riviere, the centre-forward scored one Premier League goal all season and makes Joelinton look like a natural goalscorer.
Meanwhile, Luuk de Jong went back to Holland for £5m and scored for fun once again, 94 goals in 151 league starts at PSV.
That first season after his NUFC loan, Luuk de Jong scored 20 in 32 league games to help PSV win the title, whilst Newcastle with Riviere up top almost got relegated, only reaching safety when winning the final away game of the season at QPR.
Could Luuk de Jong have been a success with Newcastle United in the Premier League? With a different manager and in an ambitious set-up, just maybe. One thing for sure, signing his brother Siem de Jong in that summer of 2014 proved a far bigger disaster than what might have been with Luuk.
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