The Magpies have again been linked with a summer moved for Leicester City’s playmaker James Maddison
It is no secret that Newcastle United hold a long-standing interest in England international James Maddison, and it remains to be seen whether they will go back in for the midfielder this summer.
But key stats highlight the reasons why Dan Ashworth and the recruitment staff at Newcastle are after the Leicester man. Alongside Newcastle’s midfield talisman Bruno Guimaraes, Maddison is one of the most fouled players in the Premier League. The Englishman was fouled 79 times this season – just four times less than Guimaraes’ 83.
Only Crystal Palace forward Jordan Ayew has been fouled more than the two, meaning that Eddie Howe’s men would have two of the top three most fouled players in the league. And that could mean United get a big advantage when it comes to set-pieces.
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Newcastle have had a significant threat from dead-ball situations this season. They ranked first in the league from dead-ball situations that lead to a shot with 110.
This is in short down to the influence of Kieran Trippier who has been one of the most creative players in the league – he has created 94 of those 110 shots – placing him at the top of the list of players who created a shot from a dead-ball situation.
While the Magpies pose a threat from set plays, they have often found themselves struggling to capitalise on it. Howe’s side placed 11th in the league for goals from a set piece, netting on just 10 occasions. Adding the creative flair of Maddison could help offer something different for Newcastle. Maddison is no stranger to taking free kicks, and with 13, he ranks third in the league for shots attempted from them this season.
So, Maddison not just earns the free kicks, but he can also take them to great effect too which could be of significant value, should Newcastle sign him.
Another reason why Maddison earns so many fouls is his progressive attacking play; as he looks to drive his side up the pitch to create and score goals. He found the net on 10 occasions and made nine goals with assists for a goal-shy relegated Leicester side.
If Newcastle want to fight on all four fronts next season, they need somebody as creative as Trippier, as the now 32-year-old cannot be expected to play every match in a potentially 50+ game season.
Premier League’s most-fouled players 22-23
1.Jordan Ayew (Palace) 90 fouls
2. Bruno Guimaraes (Newcastle) 83
3. James Maddison (Leicester) 79
4. Jack Grealish (Man City) 78
5. Wilf Zaha (Palace) 77