Gael Bigirimana


By Dan King - Newcastle United Digital Editor

Gael Bigirimana thanked the Newcastle United supporters after receiving his Magpies Goal of the Season award for last term.

The midfielder's Barclays Under-21 Premier League strike against West Bromwich Albion was chosen by the fans in a Twitter vote carried out on @NUFC, narrowly beating off Moussa Sissoko's screamer against West Brom's first team and Yohan Cabaye's long-range goal against Liverpool.

Bigirimana was almost 40 yards from goal as the ball dropped to him at the Hawthorns in September, but he sent a rocket shot into the top corner as United won 4-3 in a thrilling match.

He was presented with the trophy as he reported back to the Club's Benton HQ for pre-season testing on Friday.

"It's a privilege and first of all I want to thank all the fans who voted for me," he told nufc.co.uk.

"It shows that they still have faith in me and that's a big thing. I'm passionate about Newcastle and to win this trophy is an honour and a privilege, so thank you.

"The score was 1-1 and we were doing well, and the ball dropped to me near the centre of the pitch. I just thought 'why not?'.

"It kind of felt like I was closer to the goal when I shot but when I looked at the goalie I realised I wasn't as close as I'd thought! But I just thank God that it went where it went."

When asked if it was the best goal he's ever scored, Bigirimana replied: "Probably, yeah.

"But the goal I scored against Wigan (in 2012/13) is still my favourite. To beat that one will take something special.

"It might not seem like it was better than the one I scored against West Brom, but that was my first goal in the Premier League so that'll always have a special place.

"But that one against West Brom is close to the Wigan one."

And Bigirimana wasn't the only winner in our @NUFC competition. Tom O'Hare from Whitehaven in Cumbria was chosen at random to receive a signed Newcastle home shirt.