Rondon is proving his worth under Benitez, with four goals in his last six games as Newcastle have finally climbed up the Premier League table. He has been a focal point for us and his ability to lead the line has been a big difference in our turn around in fortunes.
Here’s what Rafa said when discussing his former striker and current number 9 ahead of tomorrow’s clash with Fulham:
“He is playing well, he would like to score, but I don’t think he has to prove anything. He is a good player & I wish him all the best for after this game. He suits their style of play. He will give everything. If he scores, we score 3 & win then I don’t care”
“Rondón is a strong centre forward. We wanted a physical striker with more mobility as we don’t have much possession. That’s why I wanted Salomon – that’s what we were looking for.
“He has to carry on scoring goals.”
Mitrovic needs runners off him and the team built around his aerial strength, whereas Rondon has more athleticism and pace to create problems without a strong midfield behind him. In our side, he is a perfect fit and it is becoming clearly just why Rafa fought so hard to get him here in the summer.
Even if Mitrovic plays well tomorrow, we are better off with Rondon this year, though I am sure Rafa would love to see the big Venezuelan grab the winner and condemn Fulham to bottom spot over Christmas. Here’s hoping Rondon keeps scoring to finally put the Mitrovic debate to bed for good.