Florian Lejeune in top form once again in La Liga leaders shut out
On Sunday night, Florian Lejeune was up against what had been the league leaders going into this weekend.
The on loan Newcastle United centre-back making his tenth La Liga start of the season for Alaves after his season-long move was agreed back in September.
Real Sociedad went into the weekend not only top of La Liga but also top scorers in Spain with 22 goals in 11 matches.
Florian Lejeune has been getting rave reviews from Spanish media and it was another quality display to add to the growing list.
The Newcastle loan man helping Alaves to keep a clean sheet as they shut the La Liga leaders out, the 0-0 draw meaning Real Sociedad drop down to second in the table.
Former Newcastle midfielder Mikel Merino started for the visitors but he and his teammates could find no way through, as this season’s much improved Alaves defence stood firm.
Alaves are now unbeaten in the last five Florian Lejeune matches, adding this credible draw against what were the league leaders to results including an away win over Real Madrid and draw at home against Barcelona.
Last season Alaves were terrible in defence, conceded 59 in 38 games, the third worst in La Liga, this season they have conceded only 13 goals in 12 games so far. These last five starts for Florian Lejeune, including the win away at Real Madrid and the draw with Barca, seeing only four goals conceded in those last five appearances.
Steve Bruce made it clear last season that he wasn’t keen on having centre-backs who could also play a bit, all but totally sidelining both the Frenchman and Fabian Schar from his Premier League side.
With Florian Lejeune, Newcastle fans never saw him on the pitch again in the Premier League last season after what was arguably his finest 60 seconds in a black and white shirt.
The 21 January 2020 saw him come off the bench at Goodison Park, a woeful team performance and negative tactics from Steve Bruce seeing Newcastle absolutely battered by Everton who should have been four or five ahead, instead in a space of a minute in added time after the 90, Florian Lejeune hilariously scored twice and NUFC somehow emerged with a point.
Interesting to see what happens with Florian Lejeune next summer when he will have one year left of his Newcastle contract.
Steve Bruce preferring long hopeful / hopeless balls from the back, rather than wanting to incorporate the likes of ball playing defenders such as Schar and / or Lejeune in a back four or five to help play the ball out of defence.
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