The Newcastle United Class of 2022/23 – Fabian Schar
Here at The Mag we have asked 20 of our regular / irregular contributors to pay tribute to the 20 Newcastle United players who started two or more Premier League matches this past 2022/23 season.
To an extent guided by their preference, each writer has been allocated one player each.
This series of articles runs from Thursday 1 June to Tuesday 20 June with one player covered each day, each article appearing at noon.
This will be starting with the player who had the lowest NUFC squad number (Kieran Trippier), right through to the highest (Bruno Guimaraes).
Today’s Newcastle United player from the class of 2022/23 is Fabian Schar, our thanks to Davey Hat-Trick for providing this overview:
Your three stand out moments of the season for this player?
Helping Newcastle’s defence to become the joint-meanest in the league, 33 goals conceded. For context, we conceded 62 goals in Steve Bruce’s last full season as Newcastle’s coach, but of course, he didn’t rate Fabian Schar
Banging in Newcastle’s first goal of the season v Forest. We were by far the better side, but looked like we were running out of ideas. “Leave this to me” said the coolest man on Tyneside, and rifled in a worldie from 20 yards. It set the tone for the season
His passing from right centre back to the inside and outside left channels. Off the top of my head, I can think of four goals we scored this season as a direct or indirect result of a perfect Fabian Schar pass, plus another dozen opportunities we didn’t convert. He’s the best long-ball player we have, and when we’re trying to beat the press, that skill is invaluable. If Anthony Gordon hits form next season, I see these two as a potential match-winning combination
What have been this player’s strengths this season?
He’s great on the ball – he can carry it upfield or pass it a long way as well as anyone. He’s also as cool as a cucumber.
I bet Sven Botman has benefitted from playing alongside him.
Finally, his reading of the game is excellent. He is in the right place at the right time more often than not.
He’s not the quickest. Neither are Botman, Burn or Lascelles, so that is something that might cause us issues in the Champions League.
Oh – and he likes a lie down. He doesn’t need to be so dramatic when he gets a knock.
How would you describe his contribution overall this season?
I think we’ve been so excited by Botman’s contribution this season, Schar’s has been overlooked, but he’s been one of our big players for me
On a scale of 1-10, how important will this player be to Newcastle United next (2023/24) season?
8.5. I’m not sure I see Lascelles at the club next season, so at the time of writing, Schar is our only right-footed centre half. If we sign a top-level competitor for that position, then 7.
What do you see their role in the team / squad being next season for Newcastle United?
Again, he and Lascelles are our only right-sided centre backs.
As long as that situation persists, we’ll need his cool head, his passing and his skills on the ball as much as we have this time round.
Is there more improvement Eddie Howe can get out of this player?
Oof. I don’t think he’s going to get any faster, so no.
He’s clearly a very intelligent man – he’s got more degrees than the entire population of sunlun. So there may be a coaching / mentoring role for him when the legs pack up.
What rating out of 10 would you give this Newcastle United team / squad for the 2022/23 season?
9. The last time I just flat-out enjoyed a season this much was when Chris Hughton’s team gained promotion in 2010. There is something about a team that plays its heart out every week that gets the fans hyped up.
Ten months ago, the editor of The Mag asked me – and others – to predict how the Premier League table would end this season. I said we’d be 7th, and most of the comments said I was being over-ambitious. Well, here we are in the Champions League. This team has been brilliant, and made us all ambitious.
In comparison, what would be the individual rating you’d give out of 10 for your player’s contribution this past season?
9. His contribution has been underrated by some, although you’d be happy to have him in your fantasy league team.
How gutted would you be if this player left Newcastle United this summer?
I think we’d be mad to sell him, unless we sign a world-class right-footed centre half. Or two. And we won’t do that.
Please predict what Eddie Howe’s first choice eleven will be next season and just put ‘New Signing’ if you think the NUFC Head Coach will bring in a new first choice for that position.
Depends on whether we sign an attacking or defensive midfielder – and as ever, I really have no idea, but I’ll have a stab at…
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