Once upon a time, Miguel Almiron was Newcastle United’s most expensive transfer ever.
Shortly after arriving for £21million, the Paraguayan transformed the way we played.
The often defensive system deployed by Rafa Benitez became a joyous counter-attacking approach, spearheaded by the pace of Almiron.
Two and a half years on, and it’s hard to see where Miggy fits in at St James’ Park.
Back then he was the one major signing – the creative force driving the attack.
Since then, more exciting options have arrived. Allan Saint-Maximin is the fan favourite, while Callum Wilson is the striker we’ve craved.
Now it looks like Joe Willock is set to return, with reports of a fee in excess of £20million being agreed with Arsenal.
And that isn’t the end of Newcastle’s midfielder pursuit.
Newcastle transfer targets beg questions about Miguel Almiron
And with the way finances are at Newcastle, it would seem strange to sign either of these players if they weren’t going straight into the starting XI.
We seem all but certain to start the new season with the 3-5-2 system we used at the end of the previous campaign. It certainly worked well.
If Willock arrives, he will definitely be a starter. Jonjo Shelvey also seems certain to start in the middle of the three.
That leaves one position up for grabs. Will it be Almiron’s? Or is it more likely to go to whichever other centre-midfielder arrives?
Almiron could also play as a forward, but would only be a backup option.
The 27-year-old is adored on Tyneside, but going into the new season and with transfer rumours continuing to swirl, it’s hard to see where he fits into our starting XI.
While the 3-5-2 system certainly helped the team last season, it didn’t help Almiron.