Newcastle United had players that stepped up and others that trended the opposite direction during the 2019-20 season. We look at who regressed the most for the Magpies.
In an up and down season like Newcastle United are dealing with, there are players that have stepped up and others that have disappointed. Yesterday, we gave you the most improved player this season and now, we identify the player that has trended most the other direction.
Durim Halimi: Fabian Schar
I agree with Carson’s selection below, but I have been disappointed with Fabian Schar this season. The Swiss international is Newcastle United’s best defender, but he has not played that way this campaign. Offensively, Schar has picked up where he left off last season as he is still finding ways to score meaningful goals as a defender, but his inconsistency on the back line is the reason why he is my selection.
Schar is known for his confrontational style of defending, his ability to intercept key passes and make last second tackles that bail the Magpies out. This season, however, Schar’s inability to do all that consistently swung the door wide open for Federico Fernandez to take his place in the lineup.
I understand that Schar picked up a knock that kept him on the sideline for a few weeks, but even when healthy he has not been able to win his place back in the team. The talent is there for all to see, but he needs to alter his mindset and think as an elite player in order to find his stellar form once again.
Carson A. Merk: Sean Longstaff
Last season was a huge year for Sean Longstaff. He made his way into the rotation due to injuries in the central midfield and became a breakout star for the Magpies. But, his season ended with a leg injury and he hasn’t been the same since.
His passing has been lazy at times and he’s made some careless mistakes to put Newcastle under pressure, defensively and in distribution. One of those mistakes was a second half red card against Wolves that saw him pick up a three-match ban. His numbers have been disappointing as well. Outside of a goal and an assist against Oxford United in the FA Cup, he registered only one assist in the Premier League this season and that came back in August.