Red Devil-turned-Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville has described Jonjo Shelvey's midfield masterclass in Newcastle's 1-0 triumph over Manchester United on Sunday as a "joy to watch."
The Englishman delivered what was undoubtedly his finest performance of the current campaign in the high profile clash at St. James' Park and was emphatically awarded man of the match by match commentator Neville.
The clash was decided by Matt Richie's resounding strike in the 65th minute, with the Magpies resolutely holding out for the three points. It was anything but easy, but Rafa Benitez's side secured the vital three points through a long period of dogged defending - including three goal-line clearances.
Jonjo Shelvey - MOM— Sky Sports Statto (@SkySportsStatto) February 11, 2018
Touches: 84 (most for Newcastle)
Opposition half passes: 33 (most for Newcastle)
Tackles: 4 (most in match)
Key passes: 2
5th win in his last 7 apps v Man Utd@NUFC win their 1st PL home game for 113 days pic.twitter.com/H46VcnXYFG
Shelvey was integral to both sides of the game on the day, dictating play with wonderful weighted passing and breaking up United's constant attacks with crunching tackles and vital interceptions.
"Jonjo Shelvey’s passing in this game has been a joy," Neville said in the closing stages of the live coverage (via Football Insider). "His class and composure has been great to see. He is absolutely the man of the match."
The win on the day lifts Benitez's side to 13th in the table, and two points above the dreaded relegation zone.
United remain second in the table, but are now looking over their shoulder after Liverpool closed the gap to within just two points in their 2-0 victory at St. Mary's on the same day.