Alan Shearer has slammed Joelinton and Miguel Almiron for playing too far away from each other in Newcastle United’s 1-0 defeat to Arsenal at St James’ Park on Sunday.
Newcastle splashed £40million on signing Joelinton from Hoffenheim in the summer transfer window to break the £20million club-record transfer that was spent on Almiron in January.
However Shearer’s first impression of seeing two of the most expensive players in Newcastle history were not good at all as Steve Bruce’s side struggled to create chances against Unai Emery’s Arsenal.
“From a Newcastle perspective; they need £40million centre- forward Joelinton to hit the ground running and score as quickly as possible,” Shearer said on the Sun website.
“But, especially in the first half, he and Miguel Almiron played too far apart from each other and weren’t effective.
“They had one or two neat touches and Joelinton was unlucky with an effort in the first half.
“He was feeding off scraps all afternoon. There was no real quality or crosses going into the box or even long balls up to him.
“The Brazilian didn’t really have that partnership with Almiron you need — the Paraguayan was being forced to drop deeper than he wanted to because of Arsenal’s midfield five.”
Newcastle had a few chances to get on the scoresheet in the opening half an hour or so against Arsenal and in that 30 minutes, Joelinton and Almiron did look as though they were causing some issues for the away side’s defence. Joelinton’s hold-up play seems to be decent and the Brazilian is always showing for the ball and getting into space. Almiron did dive to try and win a penalty but did look bright on the ball in spells as he used his pace and close control to force the Gunners defence back. However all of that wore out as the first-half went on and then they didn’t really reproduce any of that after the break. Allan Saint-Maximin’s introduction off the bench did make Newcastle’s attack a whole lot better so hopefully the Frenchman will be starting against Norwich next week. A front-three of Saint-Maximin, Almiron and Joelinton does look good on paper and there were signs to suggest that they can look good on the pitch together too.