Things were looking pretty miserable at half time for Newcastle United, as they trailed Brighton & Hove Albion due to a Neal Maupay brace.
Steve Bruce made the decision to bring off Andy Carroll after a quiet half from the big man, replacing him with the more mobile Miguel Almiron.
While the Newcastle number 7 didn’t have his best game, it would be harsh to hold that against him, as he received pretty much no support throughout the half, despite pairing with Callum Wilson upfront.
His statistics show that he was still putting the effort in, as can most obviously be seen in the fact he competed in a total of seven aerial duels, winning five of them – despite coming off at half time, nobody won more aerial duels than Carroll. He was also successful in the one tackle that he attempted, and even made two clearances.
Carroll actually won 73% of his duels in total.
However, there weren’t enough players getting around him to get the knockdowns or to give him options whenever he was able to get the ball under control.
This can, perhaps, be seen in the fact that Carroll managed to find a teammate with just three of the 11 passes that he attempted – both the low number of passes attempted and poor accuracy offer an indication of this.
Carroll showed how much of an asset he can be during the 2-0 win over West Ham. A massive reason for that is because his teammates played to his strengths, using his aerial threat to get up the pitch and create chances.
The 31-year-old is not the type of player that will single-handedly take the game to opponents; he needs service and support, which he simply didn’t get during this match.