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12 reasons why Newcastle scapegoat should be appreciated?

Date: 12th January 2013 at 11:13 am
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Newcastle United take on Norwich City in the Premier League at Carrow Road this afternoon and will be looking to add to the 13 blocks he’s already made this season…

- Norwich fell to a controversial 2-1 defeat away to West Ham last week, a late Russell Martin goal providing scant consolation. The result continues a worrying run of form for Chris Hughton’s side, and although the Hammers’ disputed penalty was pointed to as the turning point, the hosts struggled to pose a consistent threat on West Ham’s goal.

- Norwich’s strikeforce would do well to take their lead from Robert Snodgrass, one of the Canaries’ leading offensive lights this season. He’s had the most on target attempts of any Norwich player this season with 25.

- Snodgrass has also been contributing positively in defence for Chris Hughton this season. He’s won 42 attempted tackles, the most of any Norwich player, giving him a 65% success rate overall.

- Bradley Johnson continues to be Norwich’s enforcer-in-chief, leading him to unsurprisingly continue to rack up the fouls. He currently sits joint third on the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index with 39.

- Alexander Tettey is clearly keen to build on his recent performances for Norwich following a hard working performance against West Ham. He’s ran for an impressive 6.29 miles.

- Frenchman Sebastian Bassong’s all-round defensive contribution continues to be excellent for Norwich. He’s successfully contributed defensively to the Norwich cause once every 12 minutes this season.

- A very early goal from Papiss Cisse was not enough to prevent the Magpies suffering a 1-2 defeat to Everton at St James Park. It was an effort to build on for Alan Pardew’s side however, his team creating a number of chances only to be thwarted by a solid Everton defensive effort.

- Whilst the Newcastle defence have been relatively solid in terms of their discipline this season, Papiss Cisse has been transgressing at the other end of the pitch more than any other Newcastle player. The EA SPORTS Player Performance Index shows him notching up 26 so far.

- Davide Santon has been flourishing on Tyneside this season and is also adding some offensive strings to his bow. He’s dribbled with the ball 12 times and delivered 21 crosses.

- No Newcastle player has been throwing their body on the line more than Mike Williamson this campaign. His 12 blocks is the highest in the Magpies’ squad.

- Newcastle’s main ball wizard continues to be Hatem Ben Arfa though, who pushes Santon into second place for most dribbles with 27, a figure that also places him joint 3rd on the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.

- Vurnon Anita is slowly proving to be a shrewd buy by Newcastle given some of the numbers he’s generating on the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index. No Newcastle player has successfully completed more passes in the opponent’s half than him, having recorded 246 so far this season.

Data courtesy of the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, the official player rating index of the Barclays Premier League.

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