Welcome to POTG, or Player(s) Of The Game, where you rate the team after a League/Cup game and decide who the POTG is, and more. Today we look at our 0-1 Loss against Newcastle United.
If you want to see a far more well researched and detailed analysis of each game, with lots of statistics and data to back it up, I highly recommend taking a look at Mithrandir's data blog articles he has started back up. These articles are much more opinionated and gives the fans a chance to rate the players themselves, so everyone has a voice.
How the ratings work:
8: Very Good
3: Very Poor
1: Bob Bradley
Paul Clement: 3.85
Clement set aside his successful 3ATB formation to help add in more midfielders in a diamond. He immediately brought in Renato Sanches after two days of arriving at Swansea (which drew no favours with some on here) and set us up to be much more careful and restricted when going forward so when Sanches played in through balls to other players, they simply weren't in an attacking position to actually do some damage up front.
Some people blamed Clement in how he set up the side, quote: "Poor team selection gifted the points to Newcastle." And some said that it was the game plan, or lack thereof, that was always flawed to begin with: "They had a gameplan and it worked." with many condemning how the team actually played: "Too many sideways and backwards passes, no penetration from the Swans whilst Newcastle didn't have much possession but they made it count when they did." and "At least they tried to create chances, we were happy to just have the ball on our feet for too long. By the time we started to move forward it was too late.".
He attempted to salvage a point by bringing in attacking options of Wilfried Bony and Luciano Narsingh over Roque Mesa, however in the end we failed to score and that's what set us aside from Newcastle.
Lukasz Fabianski: 7.70 (POTG)
Fabianski played so well against the Magpies, and was so unlucky to concede a goal that was from a poorly-defended set piece that wasn't his fault after a powerful header from six yards by Newcastle skipper Lascelles. He produced an absolute world-class save after a brilliant effort from Joselu to deny what would have been a great goal. He was calm and level-headed throughout and was easily the best player on the pitch by a country mile.
Martin Olsson: 5.35
Olsson was utterly anonymous against Newcastle and struggled to make himself a presence as he was largely kept quiet against a decent backline. Did not do enough to contribute to the match but is obviously our best left back right now.
Alfie Mawson: 5.10
Mawson missed an easy chance in the game that would've had the Swans be one-nill up and put us in the driving seat. However, he missed the vital header and was not his best against the Barcodes' attack. He was out jumped by Lascelles to score their goal but it was largely not his fault due to zonal marking screwing him over because of other players' laziness.
Federico Fernandez (C): 5.55
Fernandez also had a quiet game, not doing much if anything at all. We should easily expect more vocal action by our captain especially when Ritchie almost booted Alfie in the face. Hopefully will pick himself up because he is a confidence player.
Kyle Naughton: 4.75
Kyle was poor on Saturday, not pinging in decent enough crosses or making enough good runs to justify a starting spot in a premier league team. He desperately needs to improve as he is easily our best right back at the moment, although if Arias arrives in January he can expect his spot to be taken. Has to work harder than he does.
Sam Clucas: 4.95
Clucas was playing as an anchor/ball playing third CB and for the most part was invisible as nothing more than a slightly more mobile Jack Cork. He wasn't playing in his normal role of BBM however there is no excuse for his awful set pieces that Carroll should have taken anyway. Step up your game, please.
Leroy Fer: 4.94
Fer is another case of a player going missing, as he was on cold form the entire match and did nothing notable during the 90 minutes he was given. Was perhaps our worst player on the field who played 90 minutes. Must improve his consistency in games.
Tom Carroll: 5.16
Tom looks as though he is one of our only center-midfielders able to play as an attacking playmaker, and he didn't even do that well in game. He was quiet and was surprisingly pushed back away from their goals. I'm not sure if this was Clement's tactics or not but he shouldn't be playing so deep.
Renato Sanches: 4.26
*sigh* where do I begin on the young Sanches. He gave the ball away 23 times in 68 minutes, he was clearly not match fit and misplaced several passes, and was busy for the most part but ineffective. I don't think it was his fault to be fair, he'd only just arrived after a load of hype and was placed out of position and started after barely any time to work with his team mates and gather his bearings. As one person said: "You could see him passing to space rather than to a man, the team, however, expected him to pass to a man. A few careless passes regardless, but needs people to play off of him to be successful." Well said.
Tammy Abraham: 5.15
Abraham missed possibly our best chance of the game when he missed an almost open goal after rounding the keeper expertly. Besides this chance he was overwhelmed by the opposition's defence and didn't do much for the most part beside that. Hopefully will receive more accurate passes and crosses in future and more chances created.
Jordan Ayew: 6.45
Ayew was, in my opinion, our best outfield player on match day. The amount of pressing and work he puts in is unbelievable; regularly topping the charts against the best of the best. I can't see him being dropped anytime soon if Clement decides he is good enough to start the next game against Spurs where he will surely be kept very busy.
(SUB) Wilfried Bony: 5.16
Not much to report on for Bony as Newcastle shut up shop after their opener. Didn't do much but didn't do badly for the time he was given and may be handed a start against Tottenham Hotspur.
(SUB) Luciano Narsingh: 4.28
Narsingh had one shot saved by Elliot, and apart from that didn't do anything else. I would like him to use his pace much more often as it is clear he is blessed with it. Our best winger by far.
Overall Team Performance: 5.29
Another sub-par performance for the boys as we ultimately missed out on three points from another relegation-threatened team. Don't expect to see us soar up the table against a rejuvenated Spurs side who dominated Everton last weekend 3-0.
Opposition Performance: 6.25
Newcastle were average in a game where 60% of voters thought that they deserved the win. May be possible relegation candidates however they have put two good results back to back now so we will have to see.
Match Officials Performance: 5.65
I think to say the officials were below average this game is harsh: aside from the Matt Ritchie head kick, and the Lascelles handball (both cases I think were correctly called) they did a decent job and didn't mess us up completely like some referees (e.g. Mike Dean).
Paul Clement Average: 4.48
Top 5 Performers this season:
1. Lukasz Fabianski: 7.16
2. Roque Mesa: 6.46
3. Federico Fernandez: 5.94
4. Jordan Ayew: 5.85
Martin Olsson: 5.55
Top 5 Worst Performers this season:
1. Wayne Routledge: 3.49
2. Oliver McBurnie: 3.85
3. Jay Fulton: 4.12
4. Renato Sanches: 4.26
5. Luciano Narsingh: 4.27
Best Performance this season: 0-4 vs Manchester United (5.64) (Does not count Crystal Palace)
Worst Performance this season: 0-1 vs Newcastle United (5.29)
Best Performance in a Match: Lukasz Fabianski vs Newcastle United (7.70)
Worst Performance in a Match: Wayne Routledge vs Southampton (3.12)
Thank you very much to everyone who voted!! It helps this series a lot and I appreciate you taking a minute to fill it out, it means a lot.
All criticism is appreciated!