Good news has been a bit thin on the ground for Newcastle United so far this season, only the odd individual has given the fans a lift as the team are still winless after eight Premier League matches.
One of those positives has been Chancel Mbemba.
Arriving as a 20 year old, Mbemba has effortlessly made the step up from the weaker Belgian League, showing pace, confidence and excellent reading of the game, as many of those around him have floundered.
Stats compiled by Opta back this up, with Chancel Mbemba having made more interceptions (26) than any other central defender in the Premier League.
Obviously the ball has spent a fair bit in Newcastle’s final third this season but the DR Congo defender has shown that playing against Premier League quality strikers hasn’t fazed him.
The top three defenders in terms of interceptions includes two full-backs as well as Chancel Mbemba:
30 Jordan Amavi (Aston Villa)
26 Chancel Mbemba (Newcastle United)
25 Kyle Walker (Tottenham)
Would be nice to think that the ball will end up a bit less in Newcastle’s final third in the upcoming matches, especially with Tim Krul’s injury.
Hopefully Fabricio Coloccini will also step up and take more responsibility as well, instead of leaving it to a 20 (now 21) year old to show by example.