Charlie Nicholas cannot understand why McClaren is not picking Perez more often for Newcastle

Ayoze Perez has made 17 Premier League starts for Newcastle United this season.

Charlie Nicholas has told Sky Sports’ Soccer Saturday, which was broadcast on March 5, that he cannot understand why Ayoze Perez does not start more often for Newcastle United.

Perez did start in Newcastle’s most recent match against Bournemouth, and he scored their only goal during a disappointing 3-1 defeat.

But Nicholas simply cannot understand why McClaren does not show more faith in the 22-year-old.

“Perez was always a little spark,” Nicholas said. “We kept saying ‘why does he play Cisse, and not Perez’ earlier in the season.

“The one thing about Perez is he has a trick. He can bit somebody. He might look a bit soft at times, but that’s the style of player he is.

“But it’s as if McClaren doesn’t want to accommodate him anymore. He’s just going with the grafters.”

McClaren rather confusingly selected Emmanuel Riviere to come on ahead of Perez when Newcastle were searching for a goal against Stoke City last week.

Riviere has scored just one Premier League goal in his entire time at Newcastle, but McClaren left Perez on the bench to accommodate the French striker at the Britannia Stadium.

Perez has started just 17 Premier League matches this season even though Newcastle have struggled for goals.

The Spaniard has managed to notch six times, but he has not been able to help the Magpies climb away from trouble as yet.

McClaren’s side are currently stuck in 19th place in the Premier League table and their chances of staying up are looking slimmer by the week.

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for NEWCASTLE UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch