Newcastle United head coach Steve Bruce inside St. James' Park before the Watford match, August 2019
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Newcastle loan watch: Freddie Woodman MOTM, Jacob Murphy struggles and Achraf Lazaar debuts

In our Loan Watch feature series, the Football Transfer Tavern takes a look at how a selection of players from a particular club are faring whilst they are away from their parent side, and provide a brief update regarding their form.

While Newcastle United succumbed to their third defeat of the Premier League season and slipped into the relegation zone at the weekend, a Magpies player was named as the Man of the Match by the supporters of his loan side.

Other Toon men plying their trade around Europe struggled, though, as one was benched midway through his debut and another failed to leave a positive impression on proceedings as their side won 2-0.

So, who’s been performing and who’s been faltering?

Freddie Woodman

Newcastle product Freddie Woodman maintained his perfect appearance record for Swansea City on Saturday, as the Jacks welcomed Nottingham Forest to the Liberty Stadium looking to record their fifth win in succession and retain their place at the top of the Championship table.

It was not to be, however, as Forest left south Wales with the spoils thanks to an 85th-minute winner by substitute Alfa Semedo – the fifth goal Woodman has conceded this league season, having kept three clean sheets in the opening weeks (TransferMarkt).

London-born Woodman was not particularly busy against Forest, as the 22-year-old only faced two shots on target all game (WhoScored), but the Swans fanbase were impressed by his performance and named the Toon ‘keeper their Man of the Match with 47% of the votes via a poll on Swansea’s official Twitter account.

Jacob Murphy

Jacob Murphy’s latest appearance for loan side Sheffield Wednesday was one to forget for the 24-year-old, as he struggled on the road to recently relegated Huddersfield Town, despite the Owls leaving the John Smith’s Stadium with a 2-0 win.

Former Norwich City youth prospect Murphy had started the game on the right-hand channel up against Terriers left-back Terence Kongolo, but after completing two dribbles in the 23rd and 24th minute, could not get the better of his Dutch opponent.

Murphy would leave the game in the 60th minute for Sam Winnall, having also misplaced 30% of his 20 passes, attempted no aerial duels or tackles, and was dispossessed once, to leave the field holding the lowest WhoScored match rating of all Sheffield Wednesday players who started at Huddersfield.

Achraf Lazaar

After featuring just four times for Sheffield Wednesday while on loan at the Championship side last season (TransferMarkt), Achraf Lazaar would have been hoping his temporary move back to Italy with Cosenza Calcio would return a prolonged run in the side as he looks to make up for the wasted years of his career.

The former Morocco international would have been ever happier to hear that he was being named in the starting line-up for his debut at home to Pescara at the weekend, but that was where the good things ended for Lazaar.

Fouls in the 13th and 33rd minute sandwiched his best action of the first-half, with the 27-year-old almost assisting Nicholas Pierini after delivering a cross into the centre of the box following a corner kick (ESPN).

Lazaar later fired a left-footed shot high of the goal frame in first-half stoppage-time following a set-piece routine, and would leave the field at the break only to take up a seat in the dugout when the teams re-emerged 15 minutes later.

Lazaar struggling in his return to the Serie B will be a frustrating moment for the left-back and for Newcastle, but what will be even more aggravating for the Toon will be Murphy’s ineffective efforts against Huddersfield.

The Canaries product arrived at St. James’ Park with a big price tag at £12million (Sky Sports), but has never justified the fee with one goal and three assists to his name in 41 first-team appearances (TransferMarkt).

With two years remaining on his contract, it is very much a make or break season for the former U21 international, and one that is currently crumbling to pieces.

Do any of these players have a future at St. James’ Park? Join the discussion by commenting below… 

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Newcastle loan watch: Freddie Woodman MOTM, Jacob Murphy struggles and Achraf Lazaar debuts
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