Newcastle have been showing signs of improvement since Eddie Howe’s arrival at the club last month and have picked up some points to show for it.
Half of their 10-point haul this term have come in the 43-year-old’s first five matches in charge, after Steve Bruce and Graeme Jones accrued a paltry five points from the first 11 games of the campaign.
The Toon have beaten Burnley and drawn with Brentford and Norwich under Howe, whilst losing to Arsenal and Leicester along the way.
The Athletic recently claimed that Joelinton has been ‘liberated’ under the former Bournemouth coach, with his impressive performances playing off Callum Wilson bringing in praise.
However, another player whose season has been revived from the dead since Howe’s arrival is Jonjo Shelvey.
The former Liverpool midfielder made four Premier League appearances this term prior to the change in management and recorded SofaScore ratings of 6.0, 5.9, 6.6 and 6.7 respectively. He picked up a red card against Tottenham and managed just two key passes in those games.
Former Magpies boss Bruce previously lauded the midfielder’s talents as he said: “Jonjo understands what we are trying to do. As a footballer all the things that come naturally to him are the most difficult.
“What he has done is add to his natural ability. He has added a physicality to it, getting up and down the pitch. At the moment he is the complete midfield player.
“With the top players, that is what they can do. Jonjo more than anyone has gone to town on what he can do physically and we are reaping the benefits.”
However, his aforementioned statistics suggest that the ex-Sunderland manager was unable to extract the best out of him.
Since Howe officially became Newcastle’s boss, Shelvey has recorded SofaScore ratings of 7.3, 7.4, 6.8, 7.6 and 7.1, with the only score below 7.1 coming in the draw with Norwich as the Magpies had to deal with only having 10 men for the majority of the game.
In those five matches, the 29-year-old produced an impressive nine key passes and 33 long passes. This shows that he has been able to utilise his technical ability to switch the play and create chances for his teammates, adding an extra weapon to Newcastle’s attacking arsenal.
The £70k-per-week gem has been revived under Howe, as his form since the 44-year-old’s arrival has been a far cry from how he started the campaign under Bruce. His before-and-after statistics are night and day in comparison and it seems as though he has been freed up to run games for the Magpies, bringing out the best in him.