Dwight Gayle reveals why he’s ‘thriving’ at Newcastle

Rafa Benitez congratulates Dwight Gayle
Rafa Benitez congratulates Dwight Gayle

Dwight Gayle says he’s “thriving” at Newcastle United – thanks to the club’s fans

Gayle took his goal tally for the season to 16 with a hat-trick in Saturday’s 4-0 win over Birmingham City.

The result at a sold-out St James’s Park took the club back to the top of the Championship.

And summer signing Gayle was happy to get Newcastle back to winning ways with a memorable second hat-trick for the club after three successive defeats.

“The fans are fantastic,” said Gayle, who has scored 11 of his goals on home turf.

“Coming out here to 52,000 every week is lovely. The boys thrive on it, and myself also.

“Most of my goals have come here, and it’s a fantastic feeling to be coming out and playing in front of them.”

United, buoyed by the result, take on second-bottom Wigan Athletic at the DW Stadium on Wednesday night.

Reflecting on the result, Gayle said: “It was exactly what we needed.

“We’ve got the confidence back, and hopefully we can go to Wigan and it’ll give us the belief that we need.”

The Wigan fixture is followed by a game against Burton Albion at the Pirelli Stadium on Saturday.

“We’ve got two games before Christmas, and we know it’s going to be difficult,” added Gayle.

“We’ve seen over the last week that team can beat you. When things go against you, you just need to keep your focus and work towards the win.

“We’ll try to get the three points we need.”

Gayle netted twice in the first half against Birmingham for a dominant Newcastle, and he had to wait until the 77th minute to get his hat-trick.

“I’ve got a couple of braces this year, and in the back of my mind you’re thinking ‘is it going to be one of those games where you don’t get the hat-trick?’,” said the 26-year-old.

“At the end of your career, you’re going to look back at the matchballs and be buzzing about them. To get one was a fantastic feeling. I really enjoyed it.”

United were dominated from start to finish against Birmingham.

“At home, we’ve got on top of teams,” said Gayle, signed from Crystal Palace for £10million in the summer.

“If we can get an early goal, the fans get right behind us. Then we normally have our best performances.

“Sometimes things get changed and teams up their game a bit, but we kept the right things and it worked out.”