Newcastle United supporters waited tirelessly for 14 years to see the transfer record at St James’ Park broken. Then in the space of six months, it was smashed twice with the arrivals of Miguel Almiron and Joelinton.
However, both players have taken their time to settle in the northeast, with the Paraguayan international going goalless in his first 26 top-flight matches before he sent St James’ Park into raptures with a late winner against Crystal Palace.
In the latter part of this term though he has begun to find his feet in front of goal, scoring four and assisting two this season. Joelinton will be hoping to experience a similar upturn in his end product next term and has voiced his determination to improve at St James’ Park.
What did he say?
Speaking to the Premier League, via the Chronicle, Joelinton said: “It was definitely a challenge coming to the Premier League which is so competitive, and every game is disputed.”
“But I knew it would be difficult when I came here and I’m happy for the experience and the possibility to settle in and adapt and definitely there will be improvements next season,” the Brazilian promised.
Joelinton added: “That’s what I hope for and that’s what I’m working hard towards, and I’m very happy. I knew it wouldn’t be easy, but that’s always been the case in my career, and I’ve always worked hard to do well.”
Long road ahead
With both Solomon Rondon and Ayoze Perez departing in the summer Newcastle lost the vast proportion of their Premier League goals, 54 per cent, from the 2018/19 campaign. Joelinton arrived to counteract that loss, in theory, though, sadly, it has not worked out that way. The 23-year-old striker received harsh criticism at times for the 2,130-minute gap between his two Premier League goals.
Even with Hoffenheim in the Bundesliga, Joelinton was never a renowned goal scorer, and he never hit double figures in the German top-flight. The striker often occupied a supporting role with company alongside him up front, but he has rarely been given a partner while with the Magpies and has suffered as a result.
Earlier in the season, Steve Bruce stated he would have liked to have seen Joelinton score 12 to 15 goals but given his previous exploits that was never likely. The Brazilian’s work rate is unquestionable, and he has set his sights high for next season; hopefully, he can live up to his expectations and improve as Almiron has.