Isaac Hayden made his 24th straight Premier League start on Saturday in a match that also represented his 100th appearance for the club.
Since the December away loss to Liverpool last year, Isaac has started every game. He had just started one game previously last season and only fifteen the season before.
Hayden has since emerged as a leader in the dressing room and on the pitch for Newcastle. With Steve Bruce’s arrival in July, Isaac has grown even more as a vocal representative of the club.
Isaac Hayden– new leader on Tyneside
One way that Isaac can be a big help to Newcastle is to help players who are struggling, or to give some positive insight on what is happening behind the scenes at the club.
After the game on Saturday, Isaac spoke about two players whose impact on Newcastle are significant. Those players are Miguel Almiron and Christian Atsu.
Isaac mainly spoke about Miguel Almiron, whose poor finishing was a big talking point after the Watford draw. The Chronicle have published some of Isaac’s comments about Miguel Almiron, but also Christian Atsu, and how important they are to Newcastle:
“He’s massively appreciated by everyone else in the dressing room. He’s got bundles of energy. Sometimes, you give him the ball in a difficult area, and he can get past three players to break up the pitch.”
“Him and Atsu are probably the only two players in the team that can do that. He’s massively important to us, especially in terms of getting us up the pitch and making sure that Jo is not isolated.
“It’s similar to last season when we had Rondon who was quite isolated. Jo can be quite isolated too, but if you get the willing runners like Almiron, who can get close to him, then it helps him.
“It’s a weird situation because in training, he scores every day. In the pre-match routines, he scores with pretty much every shot. It’s one of those things where for whatever reason, it’s just not quite coming off for him in the matches at the minute.
“The most important thing for him is to keep getting the goalscoring opportunities, keep working hard for the team, and at the end of the day, it will come.”
When Hayden mentions that Almiron and Atsu are the only two players in the team that can get up the pitch to support Joelinton, we’d like to think he’ll add Allan Saint-Maximin to that equation once fit.
It is quite a difference to banging the goals in during training compared to the game. However, Miguel is getting in the right places and is causing the Opposition a lot of trouble. These are some positives that Hayden is stressing, which is what a leader in the dressing room should do.
It remains to be seen if Almiron’s work can translate into some assists and goals for Newcastle. He was a playmaker and goalscorer while at Atlanta United, contributing 21 goals and 21 assists in 62 appearances for the MLS club.
However, the Premier League is a different level entirely. Almiron just needs to keep doing what he is doing, and hopefully, his final product will start to yield some results.
This article was originally posted here