Good news at last? The Lascelles stats that should encourage Newcastle fans

Newcastle Utd - Striped Fans

The present is a disaster for Newcastle. But could the future be brighter thanks to the Nottingham Forest defender?

Earlier this season, Newcastle United signed a certain Nottingham Forest defender by the name of Jamaal Lascelles.

It was a lack of foresight from the Tyneside outfit that they loaned him back to the Championship side. In their defence, they would not have seen such a defensive injury crisis coming.

But what about next season - when Lascelles can finally play for Newcastle?

 (Per Game) TacklesInterceptionsClearancesHeadersMinutes Played
Daryl Janmaat 2.03 2.17 2.57 0.89 3,074
Ryan Taylor 1.69 1.62 3.38 0.85 843
Fabricio Coloccini 1.43 2.17 5.2 1.6 2,657
Massadio Haidara 1.4 2.27 3.13 1.2 1,099
Paul Dummett 1.22 1.39 6.48 3.57 1,929
Michael Williamson 0.8 1.37 5.87 3.2 2,325
Jamaal Lascelles 0.69 1.46 6.92 3.38 1,884

As Opta stats show, there may be cause for optimism for Newcastle fans where the 21-year-old is concerned. The Nottingham Forest man does lag behind in terms of tackles won per game - that particular fact is rather a cause for concern.

But Lascelles wouldn't be the Magpies' worst defender in terms of interceptions, while two other key areas stand out.

Yes, the Forest youngster averages more clearances per game than any Newcastle defender - and wins more headers per game than anyone bar Paul Dummett.

Lascelles may struggle to bridge the gap between the second tier and the Premier League but key for Newcastle, of course, will be the fact the Nottingham Forest defender will be useful even if the Magpies are relegated...

As a man with Championship experience, Lascelles is the perfect signing for any relegated side. Newcastle fans will no doubt hope it doesn't come to that, however, while the 21-year-old has received criticism for his form this season.

For a young defender, however, whose primary job would be simply to offer support and squad depth considering Newcastle's current shortage, Lascelles' stats matched up to the rest of the Magpies defenders should encourage supporters. Even if they stay up, he looks as though he can do a job - and surely provide an upgrade on Mike Williamson.

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