Date: 19th March 2019 at 12:02pm
Written by:

OPINION

If Newcastle United avoid the drop this season, and the chances are looking increasingly likely that they will, there will be several moments that fans point to as crucial turning points.

The shock win over Manchester City in January, the commanding make or break home victory against Burnley under the floodlights back in February, and the stunning 3-2 fightback against Everton all spring to mind instantly, but there was a moment in the Magpies’ gritty 2-2 draw with Bournemouth that should also be recognised for its potential importance to the survival push.

With the game at 1-1 in the 70th minute, Martin Dubravka was caught out by a looping header in a goalmouth scramble, and it looked for all the world as if the Magpies were going to fall behind to the Cherries.

Paul Dummett had other ideas, however, and the Welsh international pulled off a breathtaking, acrobatic overhead clearance on the goal line to keep parity intact.

That clearance, a minor act of heroism that could easily be lost in the broader context of a breathless encounter, not only proved vital as the Toon Army battled their way to a crucial point, but is also indicative of the never say die attitude that Rafa Benitez has instilled into his players this season.

Chasing lost causes, throwing themselves around in desperate attempts to prevent seemingly certain goals, this is a side revitalised in recent times, and Dummett is a fine example of the grit and tenacity that the Magpies are quickly becoming known for.

It may be Salomon Rondon and Miguel Almiron who are the poster boys of this rejuvenated side, and he may not get everything right all of the time, but Dummett’s heroics must be recognised and lauded for their own role in Rafa’s quiet revolution.