October 2022 – The end of the beginning for Newcastle United?

I have been looking hard, but couldn’t find a comparative statistic for this recent trio of Newcastle United awards, so I decided to create my own.

In case anyone has already forgot, Newcastle United picked up all three Premier League awards for October 2022.

They were: Manager of the Month (Eddie Howe), Player of the Month (Miguel Almiron), Goal of the Month (Miguel Almiron – first vs. Fulham).

These Premier League awards have been handed out respectively since 1993 (Manager of the Month – MotM), 1994 (Player of the Month – PotM) and 2016 (Goal of the Month – GotM), so a full comparison only makes sense for the past six years, when all three were in place.

It certainly adds a feelgood factor to know that, in the joint history of these three awards, this is the:

First time ever when a club gets all three, via two individuals only (the Player of the Month also scoring the Goal of the Month – as it’s kind of difficult for the Manager of the Month to do either)

Second time only when a club gets all three awards in any combination (the other occurrence being Chelsea in November 2016, via Conte as MotM, Diego Costa as PotM, and Pedro as GotM)

Fourth time when a player gets both PotM and GotM (other occasions: 06/2020 – Bruno Fernandes, Man. Utd.; 04/2021 – Jesse Lingard, West Ham Utd.; 10/2021 – Mo Salah, Liverpool)

Seventh time when a club gets both PotM and GotM with any combination of players (in addition to Wor Miggy in October 2022 and the three mentioned just above, Chelsea did it in Nov. 2016 with Diego Costa and Pedro, Man. Utd. in 12/2016 through Ibrahimovic and Mkhitaryan, and Arsenal managed it in 10/2018, via Aubameyang and Ramsey respectively)

Going Newcastle specific:

The October awards represent (only checking back to the 2016/2017 season, when the GotM was introduced, unless otherwise specified):

First treble ever for the club – best month in terms of individual recognition

Second Player of the Month award since 2013, after Joe Willock in May 2021; if we look all the way back to 1994, when PotM was created, it was the 10th award overall (Shearer – 3; Rob Lee – 2; Ginola, Demba Ba, Tim Krul – 1 each)

Fourth Manager of the Month award in six years (recent winners: Eddie Howe, in February 2022; Steve Bruce, in April 2021; Rafa Benitez, in November 2018); looking all the way back to 1993, this is the 17th such award for us (with Sir Bobby Robson – 6; Kevin Keegan – 5; Alan Pardew – 2 adding to the total)

Fifth Goal of the Month award (past winners: Saint-Maximin in August 2022, Almiron again in April 2022, Matty Longstaff in October 2019, and Fabian Schär in February 2019). This ranks Newcastle 3rd in the overall table for GotM, after Man Utd and Chelsea, with 6 each, and level on 5 with Spurs and West Ham. Out of these 5 teams, Newcastle United is the only one to still have all the GotM winners on its books (for comparison, Chelsea has none left).

One final interesting fact is that out of the 57 awards of the Manager of the Month since August 2016, the so-called “Big6” teams got 34, with the remaining 23 being split among 13 clubs.

Newcastle, Wolves (4 each), Burnley, and Bournemouth (3 each) are the only non-Big6 teams to have gotten at least two MotM prizes, and of those 14 wins, a certain Mr. Eddie Howe:

Has most awards as MotM (5); this ranks him third in the overall table (after Guardiola’s 11 and Klopp’s 9); he has as many as Arsenal (3) and Man. Utd. (2) combined, regardless of who their managers were.

Is the only one to have won it at least twice with two different teams (3 with Bournemouth, 2 with Newcastle)

Is the second to have won it with two different teams (3 with Bournemouth, 2 with Newcastle), after Nuno Espirito Santo (3 with Wolves, 1 with Tottenham). If we consider Spurs as one of the ‘Big6’, then Eddie is the only one to have accomplished this feat entirely with non-Big6 teams.

No statistic is complete without conclusions, and here are mine:

We have an enormously talented manager. Eddie Howe has shown that he can build teams, can revive players, and can challenge the established order.

We have a strong team. We score beautiful goals, we don’t depend on a single player having a day of grace, and we don’t have any infighting of “stars”.

We have a solid base to build upon. Our first team is well-balanced and can compete with any of the Big6; however, if we want to challenge for silverware and/or we compete in Europe, we need more than the starting XI to avoid mishaps.

We have drawn everyone’s attention through our consistency. A great game or three are nice to have and we had those before. Being 3rd almost halfway through the season, having the best defence and the fourth attack in the league, not losing once in regular time (don’t remind me of the Liverpool game), squaring it out on even terms against every single opponent we met so far and dominating most of them – these are all new things for the past decade or so.

We are getting back where we belong, maybe a little faster than anticipated. While it might take a little while to consistently challenge for silverware, the soporific games of the yesteryears are now firmly relegated to the “book of bad memories”. There’s efervescence on the pitch, in the stands, and in the offices – we can only get better.

Eddie’s prologue with Newcastle United is now complete – can’t wait reading the main story.

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