Newcastle United supporters have been drowning their sorrows in recent times after seeing their side suffer a fifth Premier League defeat of the season at the weekend.
Rafa Benitez’s men went into their clash with Leicester City having picked up only two points from their opening six league matches, drawing at Cardiff City and Crystal Palace alongside defeats at the hands of Tottenham, Chelsea, Manchester City, and Arsenal. And the Magpies remain without a victory in any competition so far this season as goals from Jamie Vardy and Harry Maguire sealed a routine 2-0 success for Claude Puel’s Foxes, thus leaving the North East giants languishing in the Premier League’s bottom three.
Consequently, there have been many frustrated Newcastle fans up and down the country in recent times, several of whom took to Twitter in the aftermath of Saturday’s clash to slate winger Christian Atsu for his display against the Midlands club.
And while he was by no means the only Newcastle player to underperform at the weekend, those Magpies supporters are spot on to suggest that the £30,000-a-week ace (as per Spotrac) seriously needs to buck his ideas up.
The 26-year-old made the move to St James’ Park back in 2016 initially on loan in a bid to help Benitez’s side get out of the Championship that season, and in doing just that, he earned a permanent move away from Chelsea the following summer.
And while he made a decent start with a few goals and few assists prior to Christmas, the Ghana international simply hasn’t been at the races since then, with the winger failing to make a direct contribution for the North East heavyweights since their 3-2 win at West Ham back on December 23 last year.
Yes, injuries have certainly stalled Atsu’s progress, but with four Premier League appearances already this term and nothing to show for it, Benitez needs the 26-year-old to step up and help his side out of the crisis they are in.
Clearly, Atsu has got huge ability down the flanks with pace to burn and trickery to match, but too often his final ball lets him down – after all, he only managed five goals and three assists in the Championship in the 2016/17 season.
But this is a time whereby Benitez needs all his players to stand up and be counted, yet Atsu simply didn’t do that on Saturday in what was his first start of the season – Benitez showed faith in him by selecting him, only for the Ghanaian to fail to repay that faith.
Like most Newcastle players so far this season, the 26-year-old has underperformed, but given the ability he has, those Magpies fans slating him for his weekend efforts are absolutely spot on in that he seriously needs to buck his ideas up.
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