After arriving near the end of the January transfer window, Guimaraes took Newcastle and the Premier League by storm racking up six goal involvements in just 11 league starts, however, he’s yet to get off the mark this campaign.
This is largely down to the fact he’s missed three games due to injury, but also because of Jonjo Shelvey’s injury which has forced the Brazilian to take up a much deeper role in the Magpies midfield trio.
Hope has been speaking about this role for Guimaraes and how he isn’t able to impact games as much as last season.
(2:29) “Another point as well I wanted to pick up on is the position of Bruno Guimaraes. Now, for me last season when you had Shelvey in the deeper role and you had Bruno Guimaraes 10-15 yards further forward in the eight position he scored goals and created goals.
“Now he doesn’t look like scoring goals this season playing in that deeper role and that’s obvious because that’s a byproduct of the position he’s playing on the pitch but I just think they’re losing so much from a player who does have that ability to unlock opposition defences and I just think the use of Bruno is another worthy talking point going forward.
Are Newcastle missing Shelvey?
“It just perhaps shows that, Jonjo Shelvey, it’s not until you take him out the team seems that you appreciate what he does bring on a day like today [vs Bournemouth] not only would he have afforded Bruno to play further up the park, as well you perhaps need a Shelvey type to drop a little ball in behind because I go back to that word it was so predictable and pedestrian and no one really seized responsibility from an attacking perspective for Newcastle.
“I thought the two wingers Fraser and Almiron didn’t offer a great deal really in terms of penetration and Bruno’s best work was done further back really in around the halfway line rather than a real cutting edge in the final third.”
TIF Thoughts on Guimaraes’ new role…
It’s true that Guimaraes’ ability and talent on the ball are being somewhat comprised during Shelvey’s absence but the midfielder who’s now one of the longest serving players within the squad, is now back out on the grass stepping up his recovery from injury and could be a timely boost for Eddie Howe after the international break.
Once club football returns in a couple of weeks, if Howe is able to call on all of his top players such as Guimaraes, Shelvey, Callum Wilson and Allan Saint-Maximin, all of whom have had time on the sidelines already this season, Newcastle will look a much different outfit.
As showcased by WhoScored’s player position map from Newcastle’s draw against Bournemouth, Guimaraes was the third-deepest outfield player which may well be the reason why Newcastle struggled so much and managed to muster up an XG of 2.0, albeit most of that came from their penalty, (FBRef) and it’s obvious he’s a crucial cog in Newcastle’s side with Alan Shearer even labelling him ‘magnificent‘ earlier in the season.