Why Newcastle United forward Joelinton deserves credit for his recent transformation under Eddie Howe
Since his move to Tyneside in 2019, Joelinton’s performances have consistently divided the fanbase.
The amount of money Newcastle United paid for him will always follow him around, however, the Brazilian is slowly beginning to show that he has the ability, workrate and desire to shoulder the burden of being Newcastle United’s record transfer.
Following Ciaran Clark’s red card, Ryan Fraser was withdrawn with Federico Fernandez brought on to tighten up the defence.
This also meant that Joelinton, who started the game at right-wing in a 4-3-3, had to play as a centre-midfielder to cover for Fraser’s absence.
Despite playing in an unnaturally deeper position, he never seemed to shirk his defensive responsibilities and could often be found putting in hefty tackles, disrupting Norwich’s creative players.
He was also an asset on the ball, someone who could make a 10 or 15-yard run with the ball that pushed Newcastle up the field which allowed the defence to have a breather.
Unafraid to do all the unselfish work alongside Jonjo Shelvey and Joe Willock, Joelinton’s physicality helped Newcastle maintain a solid midfield shape, one that did not allow the superb talent of Billy Gilmour time to run the game.
Eddie Howe has changed a lot during his short-time on Tyneside and Joelinton has been one of the biggest beneficiaries during the Howe-era.
Performances have been better in recent weeks, if he can continue to churn these out week in, week out, then Joelinton may just become one of Newcastle’s key men this season.