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Opinion

Is Fabian Schar the new Jamaal Lascelles? These compelling stats say YES

2 months ago
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Jamaal Lascelles was Newcastle United’s best defender last season and for me, undoubtedly the most important player.

As well as his own personal play, the effect he appeared to have on those around him was also a massive positive.

Even if you didn’t believe it with your own eyes, the stats were compelling.

Newcastle didn’t win a Premier League game when he wasn’t involved and conceded a load more goals in the matches he missed.

We are now almost two thirds of the way through this 2018/19 season and I would argue that Fabian Schar is that new key figure.

He may not be captain and not be as dominant in the air as Lascelles BUT the Swiss international does bring other qualities.

There have been 23 Premier League matches so far and these are the 11 Fabian Schar has played in:

Newcastle United 3 Cardiff City 0

Newcastle United 0 Manchester United 2

Watford 1 Newcastle United 1

Newcastle United 0 Fulham 0

Huddersfield Town 0 Newcastle United 1

Everton 1 Newcastle United 1

Newcastle United 0 West Ham United 3

Burnley 1 Newcastle United 2

Newcastle United 2 Bournemouth 1

Newcastle United 1 Watford 0

Newcastle United 1 Chelsea 2

When Fabian Schar plays:

Played 11 Won 5 Drawn 3 Lost 3 Goals For 12 Goals Against 11

When Fabian Schar isn’t involved:

Played 12 Won 0 Drawn 3 Lost 9 Goals For 7 Goals Against 20

Of the 21 points Newcastle have picked up so far, 18 of them have been in the slightly less than half the matches where Fabian Schar has been involved.

Newcastle United concede less and score more when he is in the team.

I think that when Schar is in the team, he helps get NUFC playing better football, his passing and willingness/ability to bring the ball out of defence are massive pluses – rather than just booting it up the pitch.

An interesting dilemma for Rafa Benitez as he has Lascelles, Lejeune, Schar, Clark and Fernandez all to choose from, as we move into this key stage of the season. How he must wish he had similar quality to choose from in the other areas of the team.

However, I would say that Fabian Schar should be the manager’s first choice at the back, the stats don’t lie.
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