Newcastle suffered their second loss in as many games on Saturday after Danny Ings’ spectacular overhead kick and Anwar El-Ghazi’s penalty consigned them to defeat. The result leaves them third from bottom in the early standings, above only Arsenal and Norwich City.
Almiron was deployed on the left-hand side of the midfield in Steve Bruce’s 5-3-2 formation at Villa Park. He lost possession 15 times over the course of the game – the joint-highest total in the team (via SofaScore)
Ryder said ‘it was clear that something was amiss’ as Almiron made his way towards the tunnel at the end of the game, with the player visibly furious.
The 27-year-old was ‘shunted on the left’, where he found himself ‘shackled with his fair share of defensive responsibility’ and could only offer a ‘limited’ contribution. His preference is apparently to operate as a number 10.
While Steve Bruce may be reluctant to change the team’s shape simply to accommodate one player, he has to be wary of alienating Almiron.
Back in June, The Athletic‘s Chris Waugh reported that individuals close to Almiron are ‘keen for him to move on’ amid interest from Spain and Italy.
If he’s not enjoying his football on Tyneside in this undesirable position, there’s a possibility that things might escalate unless something changes.
In other news, the Magpies have been urged to sell this player.
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