An unpopular opinion on Miguel Almiron – Has NUFC reporter just hit nail on the head?

Miguel Almiron’s name should be in the Oxford dictionary next to the term ‘mixed bag’. His two years on Tyneside perfectly describes the phrase which is defined as ‘having both positive and negative qualities or aspects of a performance’.

Against Leicester last weekend, the Paraguay international’s lack of composure in the final third was evident as he failed to pick out the easy pass on numerous occasions when it mattered most.

This isn’t the first time he has lacked quality in a Toon shirt. It took Almiron 11 months to start repaying the record £20million we paid for him when he registered his first Newcastle goal against Crystal Palace in December 2019.

A recurring theme of his time here is his tendency to miss sitters. Many times last season you found yourself saying, “Almiron should have scored, shouldn’t he?” after a game.

Legendary Chronicle journalist John Gibson appears to agree with me, with Gibbo labelling the player as ‘lightweight’, suggesting he’s ‘lost his way’ and questioning whether we’d even get our money back should interest arrive:

“He cost the club £20m and I wonder if they would get their money back never mind make a profit if they sold him during this transfer window.

“I would actually doubt it. Sadly Almiron has lost his way without ever making a defining mark on the English game.

“More and more he represents a headless chicken running for the sake of it rather than to effect.

“Willing, yes, relentless certainly, but lightweight.

“Maybe Almiron would look a better player in a better side with better tactics. Most would. But has he earned that right?”

‘Headless chicken’ has grown into somewhat of a cliche among supporters to describe what Almiron brings to the team.

His work rate is one of his best attributes, but at times it does appear aimless. Playing the game at a hundred miles an hour wouldn’t be needed if he just slowed down and used his brain.

There is clearly a decent player there waiting to be unlocked. One of his best spells since arriving – despite not getting a goal or an assist – was when Rafa deployed him on the left of a three alongside Rondon and Perez. He was a menace for defences, and I remember him being instrumental in our 3-2 turnaround win against Everton in March 2019.

Has Gibbo also got a point by mentioning our tactics? Atalanta fans tweeted me after Sunday’s game to say that he is being wasted by Bruce on the right flank, believing the number 10 role to be where he performs best.

As it stands, Almiron has not looked great value for money and has failed to be the productive player we need him to be – but there is time to turn it around.

With Fraser and Saint-Maximin sidelined, he gets his chance to put his stamp down on this Newcastle side and prove me wrong. There will hardly be a chance to rest as our other attacking options look even worse.

I’m rooting for Almiron to prove me wrong. I like him and admire the graft that he puts in but I don’t rate him as highly as I had hoped to when he first burst through the door.

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6 thoughts on “An unpopular opinion on Miguel Almiron – Has NUFC reporter just hit nail on the head?

  1. He is totally best as a no.10.

    Problem is that leaves us with 2 in CM with the players we have, they get over run. Only Matty and Hayden can cover the ground. Others are too slow and dont have the drive or work rate.

    This is why CM is the position that we need a new player in January.

    Soumare loan??


  2. totally agree with scott in a previous post keep almiron get rid of the fat headed manc and get a manager who will play him in his proper position not as a right back covering de yedlin


  3. scott: Quote

    Totally agree. A good manager would help him look way better than he currently is.

    He has to calm down and improve his final ball, but there’s a good player in there when you stop playing him in a different position every week!


  4. There’s a wonderful line in the Robin Williams movie “The Birdcage” where Nathan Lane says “Whatever I am, he made me! I was adorable once, young and full of hope. And now look at me! I’m this short, fat, insecure, middle-aged THING!”
    Williams replies with “I made you short?”

    When Almiron arrived he was noticeably quicker than most of the opposition. Now he doesn’t seem to have the pace over ANY defenders.

    He has ALWAYS been a headless chicken, running into blind alleys and trying to run so fast his touch deserts him. And lets not pretend that ASM is not the same.

    Suggesting that Bruce is somehow responsible for Almiron being a slow, headless chicken who lacks vision is a bit like blaming Robin Williams for Nathan Lane being short.

    As for thinking that saying you have an “unpopular opinion”, will somehow increase readership, what you refer to as this new found unpopular opinion is actually only considered unpopular for the readership of this site. The majority of Newcastle fans have been saying this for 18 months


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