Is hard work enough to justify Jack Colback's Newcastle spot?

Taking a closer look at the Newcastle United midfielder's latest contribution.

Newcastle United saw their poor start to the new Premier League season continue as they lost 2-0 to West Ham United on Monday evening.

Two goals from Dimitri Payet gave the Hammers the victory with Newcastle failing to score from any of their 14 shots, four of which were on target.

Much has been said about Newcastle’s starting XI in the aftermath of their latest defeat, and one player who has come in for plenty of criticism is midfielder Jack Colback.

The 25-year-old has played every minute of Newcastle’s league campaign to date, but alongside Vurnon Anita the Magpies duo offered little in an attacking sense and could not prevent Payet continuing his great start to life at Upton Park.

The problem with Colback is that he is a very hard worker who is clearly passionate about the club but is that enough to justify a starting spot when Newcastle are struggling?

  Passing AccuracyKey PassesBall RecoveriesDispossessedInterceptions WonDuels WonTackles WonPossession LostMins Played
Jack Colback 86% 1 6 1 4 4 2 13 90

Overall Colback did okay from a purely statistical point of view against West Ham, having a passing accuracy of 86 per cent, recovering the ball six times and winning four interceptions and four duels.

But he managed just one key pass and lost possession 13 times and he needs to up his game considerably to help Newcastle climb off the bottom of the table.

The responsibility is not Colback’s alone, and there are others who have played far worse than him this season, but the Newcastle star’s form has certainly dipped and he is not currently offering anything close to what Steve McClaren’s side needs…with stats tables only telling half the story.

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