Newcastle United midfielder Mo Diame produced another stunning performance in his side’s 3-0 win against Chelsea on the final day of the Premier League season at St James’ Park on Sunday, and it completed a remarkable turnaround year for the Senegal international.
The 31-year-old was only making substitute appearances here and there at the beginning of the campaign with Magpies fans on Twitter often criticising him for his displays, but things improved for him at the end of 2017 and then in to 2018.
The start against Chelsea was his 17th in a row in the top flight, and he has forged a strong partnership in the middle of the park with Jonjo Shelvey as the Tyneside outfit not only preserved their Premier League status with five matches of the campaign left, but also secured a top-half finish.
The midfielder put in a brilliant all-round display against the Blues at the weekend as he made six tackles and four interceptions, while he also used his strong frame to win three aerial duels, as per WhoScored.com.
As well as his combative skills, he also showed his ability on the ball with a passing accuracy of just under 94%, while he successfully found his opponent with all eight of the long balls he attempted.
Diame has gone from a fringe player to one of Newcastle’s most important in the space of just a few months, and his Chelsea showing proves that he must be the first name on the team-sheet for them at the start of the 2018/19 campaign.