Report: Newcastle's Matt Ritchie may decide to return down south amid contract uncertainty

Matt Ritchie of Newcastle United reacts during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Arsenal FC at St. James Park on August 11, 2019 in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom.

Newcastle United wide man Matt Ritchie could still move on.

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 23:Matt Ritchie strikes the ball  during the Newcastle United Training Session at the Newcastle United Training Centre  on October 23, 2019 in...

According to the Daily Mail, Matt Ritchie may well return to the south as the situation surrounding his Newcastle United contract remains unclear.

When Newcastle were relegated in 2016, they managed to secure a deal to sign Ritchie from Bournemouth, despite him registering four goals and six assists in the Premier League.

The 30-year-old chose to drop back down to the Championship in order to join Newcastle, and impressed with 16 goals and 10 assists to bring the club back to the Premier League.

 

Since returning to the top flight, Ritchie has hit five goals and 14 assists in the Premier League, continuing to fare well even after switching from a winger to a wing back under Rafael Benitez.

Sadly, he's only managed three Premier League appearances this season due to injury, and talk of a new contract has died down given that he's been out for almost three months now.

It's now claimed that whilst Ritchie is a popular player in the dressing room, his future is unclear given that he will be out of contract in 2021, and he may well decide to return south for family reasons, as he has already called time on his international career for the very same reason.

Matt Ritchie of Newcastle United (11)  controls the ball during the second round of the Carabao Cup between Newcastle United and Leicester City at St James' Park on August 28, 2019 in...

Ritchie hails from Gosport on the South Coast, and having featured for Portsmouth, Swindon Town and Bournemouth, most of his career was spent in the south before heading to Newcastle.

Bournemouth or Brighton may be alerted to the suggestions that Ritchie could return down south, and Newcastle will fear losing the Scotland international as attempts to keep him beyond 2021 have hit the back burner.

Matt Ritchie of Newcastle United reacts during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Arsenal FC at St. James Park on August 11, 2019 in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom.

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