Salomon Rondon not signing a permanent deal at Newcastle was a blow to fans, and his form since joining Rafa Benitez in China has done little to quell the disappointment from supporters.

His contribution of 11 goals from 32 Premier League starts on Tyneside was only a small part of the reason he was named player of the season for the club.

(Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images)

His seven assists speak more about his all-round play, with the tireless chasing and holding-up of the ball being the type of commitment Geordie fans love to see from their players.

Often playing an isolated role, as Rafa implemented his defensive tactics, he worked tirelessly week after week, which endeared him to everyone.

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Such was his influence in the eyes of Benitez, the Spaniard made him his first signing for Dalian Yifang, and it has looked to be a good decision so far.

 

Salomon Rondon has made a flying start in China

The Venezuelan has scored three goals, and chipped in with another two assists, in his first five Chinese Super League games, which is sure to have Toon fans reminiscing about last season and pining for what might have been this term.

(Photo by Visual China Group via Getty Images/Visual China Group via Getty Images)

Newcastle are suffering a crisis at the top end of the pitch: Joelinton and Almiron are yet to open their accounts; Andy Carroll is still a few weeks away from being available; Yoshinori Muto is struggling for form; and Dwight Gayle is still injured.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and surely Lee Charnley must be wishing he had supported Rafa’s decision to bring Rondon back, with his current form rubbing salt into fans’ wounds which are still very much open.

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