Journalist George Caulkin has been speaking on Pod on the Tyne about how Chris Wood is seen within Newcastle United’s dressing room.
Wood managed to get his first goal as a Newcastle United player at St James’ Park last week, when his penalty was the difference between picking up all three points and starting the weekend with a goalless draw.
Has Chris Wood been a success?
Despite his struggles in front of goal since arriving in January, Wood does appear to be a big and well-liked figure within the Newcastle dressing room, with a video emerging on the Magpies’ TikTok account of Wood walking into the dressing room and being greeted with a huge eruption of cheers after his goal against Southampton.
Caulkin has backed this up, claiming the striker is popular in the dressing room.
He said: “We were fielding questions about whether he deserves to keep his place in the team. I didn’t ever think that he was going to get dropped for Dwight Gayle – in spite of Eddie Howe’s nice words about Dwight Gayle, he just hasn’t figured. But, there were questions around him.
“I thought he answered those questions very well, he was involved, he did make life difficult for Wolves’ defence and he took the penalty brilliantly – those moments are so difficult now. We have so many delays in the game because of VAR and so on and so forth, and everything gets looked at, I think it puts sort of more pressure [on].
“He took the penalty really, really coolly, delighted for him. I think he’s very popular within the dressing room and [it was] a vitally important goal.”
TIF Thoughts on Wood…
The New Zealand international, who is valued at £9m (as per Transfermarkt), was a rather shock signing in the January transfer window, but may well prove to be a good piece of business from PIF and Eddie Howe, with the striker having netted two goals for the Magpies and both of them coming during victories. Meanwhile, his replacement at Burnley, Wout Weghorst, has struggled to find form with just the single goal to his name.
While Wood was seen as a rather expensive signing at £25m, the Magpies were in need of a focal point in attack after Callum Wilson’s long-term injury and he’s certainly doing that job very well, winning 8.1 aerial duels per game – four more than the next-closest player, which is Dan Burn.