Newcastle United attacker Miguel Almiron has failed to score or register an assist in his first 22 appearances for the club.
This has been well covered, and that’s isn’t a surprise.
After all, it seems shocking that one of the Magpies’ most attacking players has gone 1004 minutes, as per Transfermarkt, without scoring in the league this season, let alone when you consider he didn’t rack up a goal in the second half of his 2018/19 campaign.
Yet while Almiron hasn’t got off the mark he has impressed in other ways.
The 25-year-old has used his blistering pace to create space for others, completing 0.9 dribbles per game on average, and he has always worked hard for the team and helped the side out at the back as he has averaged 1.3 tackles per game across his 12 league outings. (Source: WhoScored)
He has constantly rattled his opponents with his desire to run at them, he’s been fouled on averaged 1.3 times per game across his league outings this season, and while his pace has helped fluster his opponents, he is skilful on the ball as well.
Otherwise, an opponent wouldn’t bother bringing him down and giving away a foul if he was just a pace merchant, as you’d just let him run at you, knowing he’d do no harm.
With that in mind, Charlie Nicholas surely was being harsh ahead of the Magpies facing Aston Villa on Sunday as he questioned how good Almiron truly is.
The Sky Sports pundit said that when you look at the Paraguayan international you ask whether he is that good of a player before Nicholas added that he only retains his place in Steve Bruce’s side due to his pace.
“For instance, Almiron, you look at him and go really? Is he that good a player?” said Nicholas on Sky Sports News (13:22, Saturday, November 23rd).
“But he stays in the team because of his pace, but he never scores a goal.”
While it would be lovely for Almiron to start showing that he can finish or directly create a goal-scoring chance for his teammates, to effectively imply he isn’t as good as he should be or that he just relies on his pace, really undersells the attacker’s talents.