Joelinton had a tough outing yesterday; however, it is still far too early to render judgment on the Brazilian. He comes with a very high price tag at £40m, but he is only two games into his Newcastle career.
His touch was, at times, poor, and he did not do enough in his hold-up play to allow other players to get forward. However, these are the types of performances you will see at times from young players adapting to the Premier League.
It will take time for Joelinton to adjust. The problem Newcastle are facing is that due to poor planning this summer, they don’t have the luxury of a bedding-in period for Joelinton.
Joelinton was being relied upon to hit the ground running. That has not happened in the opening two games. In all fairness, it never should have been expected.
Joelinton was forced off yesterday after suffering a knock in a collision with Grant Hanley. Now, some worrying signals are coming from manager Steve Bruce about the striker.
This is what Bruce has said about Joelinton’s injury.
“We don’t know (how serious it is) until he has scans or X-rays.
“He’s very sore in the dressing room at the moment.
“We’re a bit light in that department with the injuries we’ve picked up in that department.
“We just have to see. Hopefully, it’s not too bad.”
With Andy Carroll and Dwight Gayle out until at least mid-September, Newcastle have few options in attack. We would expect Allan Saint-Maximin to be available for Tottenham, but he is not a natural striker.
This would leave Yoshinori Muto as a likely replacement if Joelinton can not make the match against Spurs. Muto too is still adapting to the Premier League as he only has 5 starts in the Premier League for Newcastle.
Newcastle have tempted fate by entering this season without a proven goalscorer who can stay fit. They can do nothing about it now until January if this gamble fails.
They are relying on players like Joelinton, Miguel Almiron, Allan Saint-Maximin, and Yoshinori Muto to adapt quickly to the Premier League and score goals. If that happens then fine, the gamble pays off.
If not, they must then rely upon Andy Carroll or Dwight Gayle to come in and provide goals. Andy Carroll, due to his fitness history, should never have to be relied upon to get the goals needed to stay up.
Dwight Gayle, similarly, has a questionable injury history but also has never proven to be able to score consistently in the Premier League either.
Still, we are only two games in and whether these gambles will ultimately pay off remains to be seen. However, not many clubs would even consider taking the risks that Newcastle have this summer.