Newcastle United accepted a cut-price fee for Joselu after he scored six Premier League goals in two years – but how is he getting on in La Liga with Alaves?
While one Premier League flop scored a brilliant clinching goal for Deportivo Alaves in their 2-0 win against Celta Vigo last time out, another striker who left England this summer with his reputation in tatters reminded everyone why he found himself so out of favour at St James’ Park.
Barely an eyebrow was raised in July when it was announced that Newcastle United had sold Joselu to Alaves for just £2.5 million, half the fee they paid Stoke City to sign him two years earlier (The Guardian).
After all, Joselu had become a symbol of the malaise on Tyneside and understandably so. A German-born Spaniard who looked out of his depth in the Potteries was never likely to step into Alan Shearer’s boots at Newcastle and, with six goals in 46 Premier League games to his name, it’s fair to say no one in the Gallowgate was sad to see him go.
And while Joselu actually has three goals in just eight La Liga games since returning to Spain with Alaves, half the tally he managed in two years at Newcastle, his oh-so wasteful display against Celta over the weekend was more befitting of a £250,000 striker, rather than a £2.5 million one.
Joselu somehow managed to hit the bar from one metre out with no goalkeeper in sight. He also powered a free header straight into the Celta stopper’s arms before scuffing wide from a one-on-one in the second half. It would have been easier to score a hat-trick than to squander all three chances.
Fortunately, former West Ham and Arsenal benchwarmer Lucas Perez came to his rescue with a brilliant poacher’s finish late on.
Newcastle might be finding goals harder to come by than hen’s teeth right now with only five in their nine Premier League games but it’s hard to imagine that Joselu would have done any better than Joelinton in Steve Bruce’s side. At least on this evidence.