Steve Bruce has backed Newcastle United midfielder Miguel Almiron to break his goal drought, as reported by The Northern Echo.
The Paraguayan has not recorded a single goal or assist since making the move from Atlanta United to St. James’ Park in January, but the manager is not concerned, stating: “Since I’ve walked through the door, I’ve been pleasantly surprised at what a good player he is.
“Of course he needs to add that finishing touch to his game, but it will come.”
Across this season and the last, Almiron has started a total of 13 matches for Newcastle, coming on as a substitute once, as per WhoScored.
While he hasn’t been able to break his drought, with Bruce hinting he needs to develop a sense of calm in the final third, there are signs that Almiron is doing this.
The 25-year-old took 1.9 shots per game last season, which has fallen to 1.5 this campaign. He makes 0.5 key passes per game this year compared to 1.3 from the last, while making more dribbles this time around with 1.3 per game compared to 0.7 last season.
This could indicate that he is getting more comfortable when carrying the ball deep into opposition territory, rather than looking to offload it – while this has seen his key passes and shots drop, this could actually make him more likely to be directly involved in a goal soon, as he will be releasing the ball from a better position with more conviction.
A goal or assist has been a long time coming for Almiron, so hopefully it will come soon for him, as his drought must be a burden he is carrying when he plays.
It does seem as though he is getting closer to getting that all-important first one, the hope for Bruce is that they will carry on coming after.
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