Why Newcastle fans are right to criticise Miguel Almiron?
It just took one game for some Newcastle fans to lose their patience, become disillusioned and express their anger and frustration with Miguel Almiron.
But then it wasn’t just any game and this wasn’t just any poor performance from the Paraguayan.
This was the easiest fixture Newcastle could have asked for and it was their best opportunity to claim three points and inject a new life into their Premier League survival campaign. Watford, the rock bottom team, had lost all their three league matches before their visit to St James Park.
The Magpies failed to take full points and the biggest culprit was Miguel Almiron.
The 25 year old had been poor this season but his display against Watford was another level of deterioration. Besides being guilty of offsides and misplaced passes, he squandered two big goalscoring opportunities that rightly sparked the ire of Newcastle fans.
When Christian Atsu provided a perfect cross, he was unmarked and an easy tap-in away from scoring a goal. But he missed it to the anger and frustration of the St James’ crowd, then followed it up with another blunder by taking too much time with his effort and allowing Ben Foster to easily block his shot.
Since arriving in January from Atlanta United, the Paraguayan hasn’t scored a goal or make an assist. Yet the fans didn’t criticise or complain about his performance, because they understood that a switch from the MLS to the Premier League wasn’t going to be easy and that it would take time for him to settle at St James Park.
They were happy to see his amazing work ethic, enthusiasm on the field and his blistering pace to stretch the opposition’s defence.
Eventually though, fans want the fireworks and the promised assists from the attacking midfielder, because that’s what they signed him for by paying a then club record £21 million.
His blistering pace and energy on the field only made an impression because of the imagined possibilities from such promising materials. However, if his potential is only good for creating some excitement and there is no end product to it, then what is the use of it all?
Newcastle fans are slowly suspecting that he doesn’t have the finishing and the passing ability to score goals and create assists in the Premier League. Almiron’s zero contribution in this regard is worrying for Newcastle and Steve Bruce must find a solution to this problem very soon.
Because unlike his predecessor, he can’t fall back on Salomon Rondon and Ayoze Perez to provide him with the necessary firepower. He has to get the best out of his current squad and Almiron and Joelinton are his team’s most important players.
If Newcastle hope to remain in the Premier League for next season, then Bruce must find a way to unlock their powers.
If you would like to feature on The Mag, submit your article to [email protected]