The extensions mean the duo will remain on Tyneside until 2023, with this official announcement finally confirming reports in January which claimed they’d both ‘agreed’ new deals in principle.
It’s good news, showing we are capable of keeping senior pros close to or entering their 30’s (Shelvey 28 and Ritchie 30), however this must be the first of several deals we announce over the coming months, with Federico Fernandez, Matty Longstaff, Javier Manquillo and Karl Darlow all awaiting new contracts – despite the fact their current deals are due to expire this summer.
Here’s the official statement released by NUFC.co.uk, which includes immediate reaction from both Shelvey and Ritchie:
Jonjo Shelvey and Matt Ritchie have signed new contracts with Newcastle United.
Both have agreed deals which will see them stay at St. James’ Park until the summer of 2023. England international midfielder Shelvey, 28, is United’s top scorer in the Premier League this season and has made 130 appearances for the Magpies since joining the club from Swansea City in January 2016.
He told NUFC TV: “It feels like a home. The people here, ever since I came to the club, have made me feel so welcome. I’ve had some good times and some bad times here, but it’s mainly good and it’s just an enjoyable place to come in and work, and the city in general has been really good for me.”
Ritchie, 30, signed for the Magpies in the summer of 2016 and has made 139 appearances, scoring 22 times.
“It’s obviously something that I wanted,” he told NUFC TV.
“Since I came to the club, it’s been a successful period and one that I want to continue being involved in. Hopefully I can be part of the future.
Here’s what Bruce has had to say since new deals for the duo was made public today:
“I’m delighted. They’ve been very, very good over the last few years for Newcastle and I’ve been lucky enough to inherit the two of them.”
“We all know what Ritchie’s like – there’s never a dull day. Jonjo is a very talented footballer.
“If you look over the previous three years – what they’ve done and how they’ve been – they’ve been that core of the club for a few years. I think it’s vitally important they still have an influence. I’m delighted they’ve committed.”
Hopefully this is the first of many, with several first-team players either out of contract this summer or entering the final 12 months of their current deals.