In the latest set of rumours circulating the North East, it is reported that Matt Ritchie will be used in a combined player and cash deal for Bournemouth striker, Callum Wilson.
If the club do manage to get this deal ‘over the line’ it would mark the end the era for the Scot’s angry, yet wildly entertaining spell in the North East.
Throughout this piece we reflect on some of the Scotsman’s finest moments in black and white.
#5. Bournemouth Volley
The Scot scored an absolute worldie in the Premier League fixture against his former, and potential future club.
Ritchie always had this type of finish in his pocket (Just ask Sunderland), but the thunderous volley in the 94th minute was a sight to behold.
Bringing the scoreline back to 2-2, the strike earned us a point that almost guaranteed another year of Premier League football in the North East.
#4. That Disallowed Penalty
Who knows what the ref was doing here!?
In our Championship fixture against Burton Albion, Matt Ritchie stuck home a penalty before it was ruled out. The referee, Keith Stroud, noticed Dwight Gayle entered the penalty area before the penalty was taken.
For reasons unknown to anyone, instead of issuing a re-take of the penalty, he absurdly awarded the away team a free kick, which of course Ritchie was not too happy with…
Luckily for us, the winger focused his inner rage into another big Championship performance and curled in the winner 40 minutes to earn us a 1-0 win.
#3. Netting the Winner on ‘Dubravka’s Debut’
In the season of 2018/19, Ritchie stepped up as Manchester United travelled North. Following an uneasy run of results for the Toon, we climbed out of the relegation zone after pocketing 3 points at St James’ Park.
This fixture will rightly be remembered as Dubravka’s debut. The Slovakian stopper put in a fantastic display, but without Ritchie’s powerful strike past De Gea, we would not have claimed the all important 3 points.
#2. Corner Flag Incoming…
Is there even any words needed to describe this!?
If a late winner is scored at St James’ Park, you knew the corner flags would get a right good kicking with Ritchie around.
That’s exactly what happened when Frank Lampard’s Chelsea came to town. Isaac Hayden popped up with the most unexpected 94th minute winner before Ritchie honed his inner Terminator to locate the closest corner flag.
We’ve all seen the video, the beautiful corner flag shaped missile gliding effortlessly through the air. In fact we have probably all laughed at the poor guy who suffered the full impact of Ritchie’s rage, right where it hurts the most.
If one event could sum up the angry Scotsman, it has to be this.
#1. Sinking Manchester City
Coming out on top for our best Matt Ritchie moment, it had to the Scot’s goal against Manchester City.
As much fun as it is reminiscing about the crazy and hilarious stunts pulled off during his 4 year spell in the North East, we want to remember the vital goals he has scored for us in black and white.
Of course his 12 goal haul during the Championship was a key part in promotion, but within the Premier League he has also stepped up when we needed most.
This time around he scored the winning goal during the 80th minute, keeping his calm to slot home a delayed penalty. We earned arguably our most surprising 3 points before the Citizens went on a 14 game winning rampage to be crowned Premier League champions.
Notable mentions must also go to the Scotsman pure passion for slapping his teammates, letting off immense rage when being substituted, blanking Aubameyang’s high five, and of course calling the referee a ‘Wee dick’!
Ritchie has been a great asset, characterising everything we want from a player, and will be remembered in a positive light if he does depart us in this window.
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