Mitrovic problem needs sorting
Aleksandar Mitrovic has arrived at Newcastle with a big reputation, on and off the pitch.
When he signed, the Serbian striker played down the tales of his antics off the pitch and said they were exaggerated by the media.
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However, as for his downside on the pitch, we only had to wait a few seconds into his first competitive appearance to see what he is capable of.
Rob Lee suggested it wouldn’t do his reputation/confidence any harm, throwing himself into a ridiculous challenge and getting booked.
Though the former Newcastle midfielder did say that now Mitrovic has to concentrate on channelling his efforts in a more productive way on the pitch.
There were claims of an elbow on Southampton defender Yoshida which Steve McClaren said he wasn’t aware of, though the United boss seemed to take a similar line to Rob Lee and more or less said that making his mark in the first match was fine but now he had to be a bit ‘smarter’.
“We were quite fortunate he did not get a red there and there would have been no complaints if he did.
“He certainly doesn’t hold back and wanted to come on and impress. He’s only a young lad and you can see how strong and direct he is – he is going to be a player.
“It could easily have been a red, I think the team will have told him – he has got to be a little bit smarter than that.”
Whilst you want players who put the effort in and try to impose themselves on the opposition, I was a bit puzzled as to why many fans saw it as some kind of positive about his previous discipline problems in Belgium, when he eventually signed.
Especially for a striker, a record of 20 yellow and 2 red cards in only two seasons for Anderlecht is a joke and he quickly needs to adapt to the Premier League and the way the authorities stamp down on this kind of disciplinary record.
In those two seasons in Belgium, Mitrovic mixed six weeks of action due to suspensions and only last season, Papiss Cisse’s stupidity almost became the final straw that cost United relegation, after suspensions for elbowing and spitting.
Not to mention how fans simply became sick and tired of Cheick Tiote’s abysmal record with discipline since arriving in the Premier League.
Aleksandar Mitrovic has to get hos head around what is needed to be productive and fit in with his new teammates, the last thing he needs on top of that is to end up sitting matches out through suspension and get a reputation with referees, as Tiote has done.
Hopefully the penny will drop with the striker who is still only 20 years of age and he will realise that to fulfil his potential he needs to channel all of his efforts in a positive direction.
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