Hard to argue with Keys’s Almiron verdict

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Richard Keys has become a figure of ridicule in Newcastle over the past few years for his criticism of former boss Rafael Benitez and defence of owner Mike Ashley.

However, for once it is hard to argue with something Newcastle United-related Keys has come out with. When you criticise Magpies winger Miguel Almiron, though, you’re not going to find many people willing to disagree with you.

“26 hours without an assist or a goal. £21million – really?,” he said on beIN SPORTS. Whatever way you look at it, there’s very little defending the Paraguayan international for the start he’s made to his first full season in English football.

It’s frustrating, because there were some positive signs of life when he first joined the club from Atlanta United in January. However, he’s been absolutely woeful this campaign.

That continued on Sunday in the Magpies’ 1-1 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers at St James’ Park. It was another hugely frustrating performance from the 25-year-old. He hit the side netting with a glorious chance in the second half, while he somehow gave the ball away in the first stanza when he was breaking clear with two teammates alongside him.

The statistics, too, don’t make for good reading as far as the South American is concerned. As per WhoScored.com, Almiron managed two shots on Sunday, both of them off target. He was also dispossessed a colossal three times and had two unsuccessful touches of the ball.

His pass success rate of 80.7% was fine, but nothing to write home about. Meanwhile, his WhoScored rating for the game of 6.90 tells you that he was rather ineffectual against Nuno Espirito Santo’s side.

So, as much as many Newcastle fans would like to, you can’t disagree with Keys’s assessment of the Magpies winger. He simply hasn’t been good enough this season.

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