If Achraf Lazaar had hoped that a return to Serie A would rebuild his reputation after a disastrous season stuck on Newcastle United’s bench, he will have been hugely disappointed.
The Moroccan left-back could hardly have endured a worse start to life with top flight newcomers Benevento after arriving on loan from Tyneside this summer. The Campania club are bottom of the Serie A table with no points from seven games and an alarming tally of 18 goals conceded, the worst in the division.
And Lazaar must at least take some portion of the blame for such a shocking statistic.
From bad to worse
After all, the former Palermo man hardly covered himself in glory as Benevento lost three times in a week recently to Napoli, Roma and Crotone, conceding 12 goals in the process. He was even subbed off in the latter two fixtures.
And it speaks volumes about Lazaar’s recent displays that he was dropped to the bench for the first time since his summer arrival on Sunday as Benevento lost at home to Inter Milan. The Wizards didn’t exactly put on a magical performance but they more than held their own, going down 2-1 with Lazaar featuring just six minutes from the end.
Coincidence or not, the fact that Italy’s answer to Crystal Palace performed much better without the Newcastle loanee in their starting XI does not reflect well.
After failing to make a single Championship start under Rafael Benitez at Newcastle last season, you wonder whether Lazaar is set for another extended period out of the starting XI.