Kenedy and Dubravka
Before the season started, Benitez claimed Newcastle were stronger than they were last year, thanks to the long-term additions of Kenedy and Dubravka in his squad, and heaped praise on Dubravka’s wonderful performance against Southampton during the 0-0 draw this past weekend.
"He was crucial for us with Kenedy and [Paul] Dummett coming back from injury last year in January," Benitez replied when asked about Dubravka, as quoted by The Chronicle.
"Why I said we were better this year in terms of squad is because Dubravka and Kenedy were here from the start of the season, whereas last year they were not here.
“So I think he's an important player for us; not just because of the saves that he is making, but because of his character and his attitude, too. He is very professional, he is very positive - so he's someone that is always good for any team and is a key voice in the dressing room."
We need to wrap Martin Dubravka up in cotton wool and place him in a safe spot between every match. He will be key if we are to stay up; absolutely terrific keeper. #NUFC— NUFC 360 (@NUFC360) October 27, 2018
Dubravka has been as impressive as he was last season, keeping two clean sheets in the league so far, and almost single-handily keeping Newcastle in games that they really should have lost by two goals or more.