The return of Yohan Cabaye to the Newcastle United starting line-up for the Premier League match at Aston Villa was a welcome one and it appears that Newcastle’s ‘new’ player has a new role at the club.
The cliché ‘he’s like a new signing’ has surely been brought out when Newcastle managed to keep Cabaye out of the clutches of Arsenal and the Frenchman was straight back into action, albeit in a slightly unfamiliar role.
The image below illustrates each Newcastle player’s average position in the match against Villa and shows just how far forward Cabaye (number 4) was playing…
Alan Pardew employed the midfielder in a more advanced role in an attempt for his precise passing to be more destructive in and around the box.
While that didn’t happen, his new positioning is surely only a good thing, as Yohan has the ability to unlock defences and with Moussa Sissoko and Vurnon Anita sitting, Cabaye is allowed a bit more freedom to get further forward.
Cabaye is determined to re-integrate himself at Newcastle as well, with the Frenchman saying sorry earlier in the week.
Yohan said: “(The fans’ response) was very nice to hear. If the fans were – or still are – mad at me for what happened then I understand and I apologise to them. I want to come back from what has happened. I was happy and I am still happy. I just want to try and score goals and play well.”
With his new advanced position, we might just see a few more goals from Cabaye and it will be interesting to see if he’s as far forward against Hull at St James’ Park on Saturday.