Ayoze Perez returned to the Newcastle starting lineup against Bournemouth, and finally put in a mature performance.
The Spanish forward hasn’t started the season well, and was eventually dropped by Rafa Benitez.
Against Watford, Perez started on the bench, only for injury to hand him a way back into the side. He grabbed the winner that day, glancing a header past Ben Foster.
With Yoshinori Muto still injured, the former Tenerife man would return to the starting XI for the clash with Bournemouth.
Maturity from Perez, finally
Throughout his Newcastle career, Perez has been inconsistent.
Often a form player, he’s done the unthinkable at times, in a good and a bad way. He will often waste possession in key positions, and dawdle on the ball.
In other instances, he’s a poacher always capable of grabbing a goal.
But against Bournemouth, we saw something different: maturity. The number 17 was for once intelligent when he had the ball, using it wisely and effectively.
Late on in the game he dropped deeper into the midfield, but that didn’t change Perez’s game. If anything, he was even more intelligent on the ball. He would pop off neat little passes, keeping possession and getting the Magpies up the pitch.
It was also a return to the industrious side of Perez, winning the ball back and putting his body on the line.
Hopefully this isn’t another false dawn for the 25-year-old, and rather the start of a strong run of form.