Newcastle United defender Paul Dummett penned a new long-term deal with the Magpies last week in what is a smart transaction by the club.
After progressing through the ranks at his boyhood club, the left-back has now established himself as a regular for the club, while adding consistency to his game in addition.
Dummett is somewhat an old-fashioned full-back. The Welshman is strong defensively and possesses a no-nonsense attitude which compensates for his lack of an attacking outlet; a trait which manager Rafa Benitez admires.
After spending time on loan to Gateshead and St Mirren respectively, Dummett made his Newcastle debut in 2013. He made a total of 21 appearances in his first season, scoring once in an enthralling 2-2 draw at home to Liverpool in October 2013.
The following season, injuries to full-backs Davide Santon and Massadio Haidara meant the Welshman was Newcastle’s first-choice left-back, while he has been a fixture in the side ever since.
It could have been a different story for the 26 year old, who now stands as United’s longest-serving player. The Welshman recently spoke about former manager Alan Pardew’s comments that the defender was “not good enough”, prior to making his debut.
Pardew’s comments were the catalyst for Dummett to go out on loan and work himself into the Newcastle team, stating “I’ve always had that belief in myself and the confidence that I was good enough, and I had to prove to certain managers who didn’t believe that. With the hard work I’ve put in, it’s probably why I’m still here now”.
After picking up a hamstring injury in the opening game of the season, Dummett’s absence from the side has been notable.
Right-back Javier Manquillo stepped in for Dummett during his four-month lay-off. Although the Spaniard did a reasonable job, he lacked the experience which Dummett had, with opposition teams regularly exploiting Newcastle’s left-hand side.
In the nine games since Dummett’s return, United have only conceded eight times; a progressive step by the Toon compared to their dismal run from November to December.
With the arrival of fellow left-sided player Kenedy in the January transfer window possibly threatening Dummett’s position, this has not been the case as Benitez has found a formula to incorporate both players into his starting XI.
Benitez spoke on Kenedy’s acquisition, highlighting his versatility and ability to be deployed as an attacking left-back. However, since signing, Kenedy has started on the left-wing, with Dummett maintaining his position as a disciplined left-back.
Both Kenedy and Dummett have solidified Newcastle United’s left flank, in an attempt to keep the club in the Premier League.
Written by Dawud Arshad
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