After a centre-back saved our bacon once again last night, I’ve stumbled upon a pretty alarming stat that sums up the biggest weakness in Steve Bruce’s team – the lack of goals up top.
Between them, Joelinton, Carroll, Gayle and Muto have managed 46 and a half hours of Premier League football this season. In that period they’ve scored just ONCE.
In playing time terms this is the equivalent of 1 goal in 31 games between them!
To highlight just how ridiculous it all is, Florian Lejeune scored more Premier League goals in 93 seconds last night than all FOUR of our first-team strikers have across 2,794 minutes of football this season.
We’ve scored 24 league goals this season. 9 of those have come from centre-backs and 12 from defenders. 50% of our Premier League goals have come from the back:
- 5 goals – Shelvey
- 2 goals – Almiron, Clark, Fernandez, Lejeune, Schar, Willems, M Longstaff.
- 1 goal – Joelinton, Lascelles, Yedlin, Hayden, Saint-Maximin.
We have paid over £60m combined for our current front line, yet none of them look like scoring, few are performing well when they don’t and three of the four are struggling to stay fit!
January is a difficult window to do business and I understand (to an extent) why Bruce doesn’t want to just sign a striker for the sake of it, but it feels like it wouldn’t take much to improve us up top right now.
The service up to them has been woeful at times, with our striker often left isolated and starved of service this season, yet these stats show how vital it is we get a goal scorer on board in the final 10 days of the transfer window.
Ashley may believe we’ll be stay up regardless – and he’d probably be right – but we can’t risk ruining Joelinton’s confidence any more, we don’t seem to be able to get consecutive games out of Carroll, Gayle can’t stay fit and Muto needs moving on.
It’s been a bizarre season at times, but you can’t deny the fighting spirit and togetherness that exists within this group – and last night summed it up.
Florian Lejeune hadn’t scored in 1087 days, then he got two in 93 seconds! I wonder if he’s fit to play up top on Saturday..