The 25-year-old has shown glimpses of his ability this season, during the win against Tottenham as well as the defeat to Chelsea at the weekend, but he still hasn’t registered an assist or scored a goal.
This is the case even though Almiron has averaged 1.3 shots per game and 0.9 dribbles per game across his nine league outings. (Source: WhoScored)
Magpies boss Steve Bruce seems to believe that Almiron isn’t delivering the goods in front of goal due to low confidence, as per the Northern Echo, and if this is the case he must do all he can to help him.
So with that in mind, Almiron should be played on the left-flank in order to give him the best chance of getting up and running for the club.
Journalist Chris Waugh in an article for the Athletic pointed out that Almiron performed well on the left flank last season, but now finds himself on the right flank this season, and the reporter also stated that Allan Saint-Maximin preferred to play on the left and that Joelinton also mainly played on the wing for Hoffenheim last season rather than as a centre-forward.
This implies that Bruce faces a selection dilemma if he wants to play all three, which he likely does, yet it’s clear he should prioritise helping Almiron as he needs all the help he can get, so he should be played in the position he has had the most success in at St James Park so far.
It’s also worth noting that Joelinton and Saint-Maximin could likely still fare okay without being on the left-flank.
Joelinton has shown signs that he could excel in a central role as not only did he score against Tottenham, but he has on average won 4.8 aerial duels per game across his nine league outings, which shows he has no problem beating centre-backs to the ball which means he can be a useful target man. (Source: WhoScored)
While Saint-Maximin has played 52 times on the right-wing during his career, scoring six goals and assisting eight goals in the process, so he can clearly be effective there. (Source: Transfermarkt)
The 22-year-old has also just generally looked lively in his five outings for the Magpies, he has averaged 2.6 dribbles and 1.2 key passes per matches (Source: WhoScored), so there’s no reason to suggest a position switch will pull the rug from beneath his feet.
So when you consider all that, surely Bruce should put Almiron’s needs first as that could end up benefiting the Magpies the most in the long-run if it leads to him getting off the mark.