Eintracht Frankfurt left-back Jetro Willems is confident that he has more in the tank, having suffered from injury through the opening games of his Newcastle United loan spell, as quoted by the Chronicle.
The Dutchman joined the Magpies earlier in the summer on a one-year deal, with the North East outfit obtaining an option to purchase the defender from Frankfurt at the end of the season (BBC).
Willems’ debut in Black and White was chaotic, as he began his cameo against Arsenal in the centre of midfield after replacing the injured Jonjo Shelvey, before manager Steve Bruce realised the error in his decision (Independent) and attempted to shift Matt Ritchie into the engine room with Willems occupying his natural left-back role instead.
However, the mix up led to the Gunners opening the scoring through Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, as Ainsley Maitland-Niles caught Willems flat-footed and broke free down the wing.
Willems was subsequently benched for Newcastle’s following two games, but returned to the fold at home to Watford last time out (TransferMarkt), where he offered a line of resilience to the Hornets’ advances down the left channel and a threat in possession with some dangerous crosses to earn the Chronicle’s Man of the Match award with an 8/10 worthy performance.
The Rotterdam-born 25-year-old has now conceded that his performances have been slow to boil as he has been carrying a hamstring injury, but he is training as normal now and has more in the tank.
“I am training normally now, everything was ok to play against Watford, it was right to play, and I’m fit to play,” he said. “I’d say [my performance] it was not perfect, but I created some chances and did my job, so that’s important for me and to keep playing.
“I played last Wednesday against Leicester in the [Carabao] Cup and then against Watford – it’s quite tough. My last game [before facing Arsenal] was, I think, last season when I played the whole game in Germany.
“So, I’m going the right way – so, it’s a great time for me to have some rest.”
If Willems is able to replicate his display against Watford in Newcastle’s first game out of the international break against Liverpool, he will be able to put to bed any concerns his involvement in Aubameyang’s goal raised.
However, in coming up against Liverpool, he would be facing the second-best front line in Europe (Telegraph) from the 2018/19 season, so there will be no easy ride.
Roberto Firmino already has the eighth-most dribbles completed and the most shots fashioned of any Premier League player this term (via WhoScored), as well, while Mohamed Salah is averaging the same number of successful dribbles as he achieved in the previous league campaign, and Trent Alexander-Arnold is achieving 10.3 crosses per ninety minutes.
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