It’s no secret that Jonjo Shelvey’s form for Newcastle United has dropped off in recent times, but the extent of his demise at the club is truly shocking when put into statistics.
It seems like whenever Shelvey is on the pitch these days that the Toon can’t buy a win, and its incredible to think pundits were fighting his corner for a place in England’s World Cup team just last year.
It became apparent last season that the team just simply didn’t win with the controversial Englishman in the side, and fans quickly came to favour local lad Sean Longstaff in the midfield anchor role instead.
But in even worse news for Shelvey, his poor win rate appears to stretch back even further than this.
Shelvey’s woeful win ratio
That is shocking stuff considering the midfielder is meant to be our most creative attacking outlet.
But when you delve into these wins, the stat becomes even more depressing reading.
One of these results came against Watford last year, a 1-0 win at home in October and the Toon’s first win of the season.
Shelvey however played little part in the match, having been subbed off injured at half-time before the goal was scored.
He was also just a substitute for the last ten minutes of Newcastle’s 3-2 win over Everton in March, and was hardly pivotal in securing the result.
Interestingly, his other two wins were both from season finales, a 3-0 dismantling of Chelsea in 2017/2018 and a 4-0 hammering of Fulham in 2018/2019.
He scored against Fulham and was undeniably man of the match against Chelsea, but of course, given they were last day of the season run-outs, the results had little impact in the grand scheme of things.
Stats can sometimes be misleading, but these ones simply put into perspective all the criticisms of Shelvey’s work rate, mentality and overall effort.
Is it really a coincidence that one of the only matches Shelvey has missed this season resulted in Newcastle’s only current win over Tottenham?
The Toon certainly didn’t win that game through flair or skill, it took a dedicated and concentrated defensive performance.
The build-up to Joelinton’s goal in that match also showed that The Mags can effectively construct a goal without the myth that we rely on Shelvey’s ability to pick out a Hollywood pass.
With Sean Longstaff lacking fitness and form this season, Steve Bruce has had no real choice but to turn to Shelvey’s services, but he should follow Rafa Benitez’s example in the coming weeks and begin to phase out the midfielder.
Love him or loathe him, it’s clear the only way is down if Bruce continues to give the midfielder opportunities.