Christian Atsu on his faith despite Newcastle’s struggles, the January transfer window and a miraculous injury recovery

NUFC 0-1 EFC 13-11-207.  Picture by FRANK REID
NUFC 0-1 EFC 13-11-207. Picture by FRANK REID
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Winger Christian Atsu has called for calm at Newcastle United, despite the Magpies slide into the Premier League dropzone.

Times are uncertain at St James’s Park heading into the festive period, with takeover talk still rumbling on, United on a run of eight losses in nine and much needed transfer spending far from guaranteed.

But, even with all of that in the background, the Ghanaian wideman says the United squad remain focussed on the job at hand - on the park.

And ahead of the clash with West Ham United this weekend, Atsu says he believes there is enough quality in the Magpies squad, when fully fit, to more than hold their own with the big boys this season.

“We have to keep calm. We have many games coming up in December and January,” he said.

“I am very happy that we have a full squad. We will keep working hard like before.

“We have improved and I believe we will keep improving. I am sure we will get out of this situation.”

With the winter window set to open a week on Monday, talk across Tyneside has already switched to how much Benitez will get to spend.

Without a takeover, or agreement in principle, it is difficult to how the Spaniard will get much cash to spend - especially with owner Mike Ashley’s insistence on setting budgets based on fees with wages included.

Benitez is keen to add a top flight-ready striker to his ranks, as well as a left-back, No 10 and potentially a keeper or central midfielder.

As we all know, though, what he wants and what he gets can be two very different things.

But even without significant strengthening Atsu thinks United can stay up.

“We were good at the start of the league,” he said.

“Maybe we are unlucky or maybe we are doing something wrong. We have also had injuries.

“I believe in the squad and the team.

“The players we have we know we can overcome.”

Atsu is back up to full speed but there was a time, around the last international break, where fears were that he could be out for a whole lot longer.

“I was really frustrated when I got injured. I was playing and the team was doing well,” said Atsu, one of the standouts from the Magpies impressive start to life in the Premier League.

“It was a surprise to get the injury. I was told I could be out three months but I recovered well.

“I now want to focus on doing well and improving the team. I feel so sad when we lose game. I feel sorry for the fans. I want to win so we can be happy.”