The Right Wing Conundrum

Can this lot be the best of the rest?

Is Ryan the right wing solution?
One of the most divisive topics among supporters this season seems to be who deserves the right wing spot at Newcastle, and for how long?

Everyone has their own opinion or personal preference as to what they want from a winger, and all hold merit when other factors come into play such as defensive cover, but based on stats alone, who is the strongest performer this season? The four players taken into account are Ryan Taylor, Jonas Gutierrez, Gabriel Obertan and Hatem Ben Arfa.

It is difficult to base a decision on stats alone due to a number of factors including the fact Taylor played in defence for over half his appearances, Hatem Ben Arfa played in the hole behind a striker and has much less game time than the other three, and finally that Jonas and Obertan have been required to cover full backs more than attack in a lot of games this season.

All things considered, check out the stats anyway, see what you make of them.

So based on the above, decide for yourself. Personally I can see why Alan Pardew picks Jonas Gutierrez every week based on the need for defensive cover and think that it’s fairly obvious Ryan Taylor should play right wing if those are the tactics.

As I said in the article the other day though, long term, we need to get in a position where our wingers main priority is to attack and create chances for Demba Ba and especially Cissè rather than being required to protect our full backs constantly.

If we can get in that position by next season and don’t bring in any more wingers, my personal preference would be Ryan Taylor and Hatem Ben Arfa if we were to go standard 4-4-2.

In the ideal scenario I would probably even play Sylvain Marveaux above Taylor and let Ryan be our ultimate utility man, but although he looks a really clever player, the jury has to be out on Marveaux until he shows the fitness to warrant first team selection.

Who would you choose? Both for the remainder of this season, and next.

84 thoughts on “The Right Wing Conundrum

  1. I still dont understand what Benny has done so far to be consider as one of our best players – or why we would change our whole style of play just to fit him in. If, when he had played, he had been shit hot – then I could understand it 😕


  2. I reckon we should see how the next couple of games go then assess the formation then with Cisse, cabaye and Tiote all available. If we don’t look like making a challenge on Europe, experiment some attacking formations then. Shame Marveux is crocked


  3. At the end of the day lads, we are in te position we are I’m trough a rigid formation of largely the same faces. It’s worked.


  4. JJ the fact Raylor has taken the majority of our attacking free kicks must improve his shots/passes stats, but I bet they dont count blasting them over the bar or into the wall as giving away possession??


  5. Ahhhhh just before i turn in i just had a brain wave that has put my mind at ease about the derby.
    (might have already been mentioned today)

    Would we even start Papiss against the mackems?
    How can we when we still have mackem slayer Mr SHOLA AMEOBI

    Seriously though, could be his last ever derby for us, next season he’ll be relegated to possibly 5th striker, i’d back him over Best to bang in a few against them.


  6. statto/toonsy/anyone else.

    Just found this, seems to use historic data, probability analysis etc to project tables; show the importance of different games (eg can use to see what result we should want in a given match that’d be the best for our expected league position (average seed filter seems most relevant)). Clearly designed for American sports but some interesting information.


  7. I would like to see a measured gameplan to suit to opponents for that day. If Wolves come to put 10 or 11 behind the ball, play Ben Arfa. If we need more deliveries into the box play Raylor. If a team has a slower defense/ are leaving gaps at the back like Blackburn, put Obertan on to counter attack. The options we have for the right wing at the moment couldn’t be more different, it depends what we need, flair, delivery or pace.


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