Talking in an interview for Saturday’s match-day programme, Newcastle midfielder Mo Diame has made an extraordinary confession about his form for the club this season.
The Senegalese midfielder, who recently retired from International football has struggled this season, failing to convince several Newcastle fans with a number of inconsistent displays.
In an interview with the United ahead of Saturday’s game against former club Wigan Athletic, Diame shows admirable honesty, admitting that he hasn’t lived up to expectations this season:
“This season has been the poorest season of my career. It’s tough mentally.
“Sometimes you lose a bit of confidence and you lose confidence about how you can play. It’s not easy, but this is football, and it happens sometimes.”
“You just need to keep faith in yourself. I can give an example – Eden Hazard.
“He had a difficult season last season, but he knows he’s a massive player, a good player. This year, he’s back again.”
I must say that it is refreshing to see a player show such honesty in this day and age and my respect for Diame only goes up following this rather frank admission.
Diame has under-performed, that there is no doubt, but I would not be writing the 29 year-old off just yet, with the Senegalese midfielder needing all the support he can get from the Geordie faithful while his confidence is low.
I was genuinely excited to see him sign last summer, having always been impressed by him whenever I watched him during his spells at Wigan, West Ham and Hull.
It is worth noting that throughout his career, Diame has played in a deeper, central-midfield role, however to my dislike, Benitez has opted to play him just off the striker – a role unfamiliar to him.
Playing him in the ‘number 10 position’ does not suit Diame’s style of play and I would love to see Rafa use the powerful midfielder in a less advanced role in the future. I have little doubt that, should he regain confidence and be played in his natural position, Mo can become an effective player for Newcastle.
The powerful midfielder scored an impressive goal in Newcastle’s last meeting with Wigan at the DW stadium, so here’s hoping he can regain some much needed confidence at St. James’ Park tomorrow.
Here’s a little reminder of what Diame is capable of, showing all 10 of his goals for Hull City last season:
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About Olly Hawkins
Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.