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Jamaal Lascelles hoping Matt Ritchie can kick on

Jamaal Lascelles is hoping Matt Ritchie's first goal of the season can help the Newcastle midfielder enjoy a good end to the season.

Scotland international Ritchie, who joined the Magpies in the summer of 2016 from Bournemouth, opened his Premier League account this term in the 1-0 victory over Manchester United at St James' Park last Sunday.

It was a huge relief for the 28-year-old, who has been in and out of the starting line-up this season, to get off the mark and the fans will be hoping it signals a good run of form.

Newcastle have now climbed to 13th position, leaving the north-east outfit two points above the relegation zone, and a crucial battle against fellow strugglers Bournemouth is next up for Rafael Benitez's men.

Captain Lascelles, who has been tipped for an England call-up this season, has revealed Ritchie's frustration and hopes the midfielder can now keep his goalscoring form going.

"Matt has been pretty frustrated recently but he finally got his goal and hopefully he can start finding the net a bit more often," he told the Northern Echo. "But, overall, it was a massive team performance and the man of the match could have gone to anybody."

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