Newcastle United fans suffered conflicting emotions after watching the Champions League heroics of Chancel Mbemba for Porto last night.
Mbemba spent three years with the Magpies before then-manager Rafael Benitez sold him to the Portuguese club in 2018.
After a quiet start to his Porto career, the defender is looking forward to a European quarter-final after playing a pivotal role in Porto’s away-goals win over Juventus.
Here’s how some Newcastle fans reacted on Twitter to Mbemba’s heroics:
Mbemba as a Magpie
Not many defenders can boast of shutting out Cristiano Ronaldo but the five-time Ballon d’Or winner struggled to shrug off Mbemba last night.
It was an interesting period for Mbemba following his £8 million (Guardian) move from Anderlecht to Newcastle six years ago.
As well as a soul-sucking relegation, the defender also enjoyed promotion back to the Premier League as the Magpies won the Championship in 2016/17.
However, Mbemba only made 13 appearances during that title-winning campaign under Rafa Benitez.
In total, the DR Congo international played 53 times for the Magpies, scoring once.
Mbemba’s ability to play top-flight football was often questioned, although he rarely had a run of games to disapprove the theory.
Benitez ended any debate by selling Mbemba to Porto for £7.14 million (BBC Sport) in July 2018.
Major change for Chancel
There has certainly been a reversal of fortunes for Mbemba and Newcastle since he left.
As Newcastle face another nightmarish relegation battle under Benitez’s unpopular successor Steve Bruce, Mbemba has become a stalwart in Sergio Conceicao’s side and bagged a Portuguese league and cup double last term.
No wonder many Newcastle fans are questioning the defender’s sale.
Bruce could do with the 26-year-old in his squad. Newcastle’s defensive record is woeful this season, with the joint third-worst goal difference in England’s top flight.
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