Almiron’s injury is a blessing in disguise for one Newcastle player – Opinion

News emerged yesterday that Newcastle United’s record signing is to miss the rest of the season with a hamstring injury.

On the chalkboard

This brings an end to the Paraguayan’s first season in England. Although he did not manage a single goal or assist, his pace in behind has completely transformed the Magpies’ attack.

Ayoze Perez has scored seven goals since Almiron joined, before that he only had three in the league,  as the speed and directness of the 25-year-old has allowed Perez and Salomon Rondon to have more space to work with, which they have exploited to great effect.

Sitting on 41 points and with Premier League safety secured for another season, Almiron’s injury is not the end of the world as it will now allow one of their summer signings to get some game time.

Perfect for Muto

Muto was signed from Mainz in a £9.5 million deal but he has found game time very hard to come by in the second-half of the season since the arrival of Almiron – he has only made 14 appearances for the Magpies so far.

He was not helped by the fact he was called up to the Asian Cup squad and thus missed December and January, before this he played in the Newcastle team that did not win in any of their first ten matches but was arguably the Magpies’ best player in that spell.

He scored a goal at Old Trafford in a 3-2 defeat  whilst he also looked busy and creative with pace and a willingness to run in behind in all of his early season performances.

Now that Almiron is out for the season, Perez and Rondon need that player who can make runs beyond the defence and create space for their partnership to blossom.

Muto would be a perfect replacement for Newcastle’s last games – they take on Brighton and Fulham with Liverpool sandwiched in-between.

The games against a relegated team and one battling relegation would probably be the best time to use the 26-year old, his pace and work-ethic would certainly trouble both defences.

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For Mainz Muto scored 27 in 72 appearances whilst his Japanese record is three goals in 29 games.

This suggests that Muto will be a success on Tyneside, he has had a disrupted season with injury and Asian Cup duties coupled with the arrival of Almiron, resulting in limited appearances, but these last few games should give the Japanese international a chance to impress the Toon faithful.

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