Wales defender Paul Dummett has been the breakthrough star of the early season games and was picked out by Alan Pardew for enthusiastic praise after the defeat of Leeds United, when he formed a decent partnership down the left-hand side with the improving Sammy Ameobi.
It is not a bad return for a player who was at St Mirren last season and figured in July he’d be heading back there – or to one of the clutch of Championship clubs who had shown an interest in bringing him in on loan.
Fast-forward two months and it looks as if Newcastle have an exciting defensive talent on their hands - his ability to get forward well combines with some sturdy work propping up the back four.
Yet for all that he has been rubbing shoulders with Gareth Bale and getting changed in the senior dressing room this season, Dummett still maps out his one big wish for the campaign - to end it at Newcastle.
Dummett knows last season things started well for others in his position but, after injuries, suspensions and a backlog of games took hold, it was suddenly more difficult to impress for the young guns who had looked capable of firing earlier in the season.
So while he is enjoying getting matches for United – and he will almost certainly continue to be their first-choice Capital One Cup left-back – his goal remains a pleasingly grounded one.
Dummett said: “I haven’t really thought about anything to be honest.
“I just have to keep working hard and staying involved in as many games as I can.
“The most important thing for me is to keep improving and getting better. I haven’t set any targets for myself but I just hope to keep getting on and getting chances here and there. If there are injuries I’d like to be involved, but who knows?
“If I hadn’t had any opportunities the longer the season goes on then who knows, I might go back out on loan. My aim would be to stay here. I would love to do that.
“I want to play for Newcastle United for the rest of my life – I don’t want to go anywhere.
“I just want to stay here, I just want to improve as a player and be involved for Newcastle United.”
Progress has been swift for country as well as club. Last month his first senior call-up saw him at the dinner table with the most expensive player in the world, Gareth Bale.
He added: “I was on my day off when I got the call from Wales calling me up. It was a bit of a surprise but I really enjoyed it.
“I was training with good players and Gareth Bale was there. He’s an £85m player and to be training with him and trying to learn from him was a really, really good experience.
“He is a left midfielder who can play left-back too, a shining example to anyone who plays in my position.
“He is a great person to look to and if you work hard and apply yourself you might be able to reach those heights.
“Round the dinner table he spoke with us and he is an inspiration.
“It was a great learning experience for me.”
What is surprisingly, given the paucity of resources England can chose from, is they have not at least taken a look at the rising left-back star.
Dummett said: “I’m English, my Grandad is Welsh. Wales gave me that opportunity first and I’m very proud of that and proud to play for them. As long as they keep picking me I will definitely keep playing for them.”