As some of you may remember, the November loan report included the hope to make this a monthly feature. But I realized that there probably isn't enough relevant information on a month to month basis to talk about, so lo and behold here we are, three months later. A lot has changed in that time and this roundup will only deal with that period: November 5th to today.
Just as before, I've pulled data from transfermarkt (a footy nerd's dream site) and WhoScored for relevant stats and info. A reminder of the disclaimer that stats can only tell part of the story, but they're the best I've got for now as catching games for some of these teams is hard to come by. If anyone has seen any of these players in action and has more info to add, feel free to do so in the comments. It would be much appreciated. For now, we'll have to do with this rough sketch. But that's better than nothing, right?
Firstly: since the last report, Adam Drury (St. Mirren), Ellis Plummer (St. Mirren), Devante Cole (Barnsley), Bruno Zuculini (Valencia), Dominic Oduro (Mouscron), Jordi Hiwula (Yeovil) and Albert Rusnak (SC Cambuur) have all returned from their loans. Since then, Cole went back out on loan to MK Dons, Hiwula went on loan to Walsall, Rusnak was sold to Groningen, and Zuculini switched La Liga outfits, heading to Cordoba. I'll still include in this edition any stats they accrued at their former clubs since the November report. We've had a few other players head out on loan in January, so those names will be included below as well. I also somehow forgot to include Karim Rekik, Hiwula, and Greg Leigh in the November report, so I'll put their full season stats in the table. Otherwise, all of the numbers below reflect performances from November 5th to February 5th.
|Name||Position||Club||Starts||Subs||Bench||Injured||Minutes||Clean Sh.||Goals||Assists||WS Rating|
|Adam Drury||RB/RM||St. Mirren||4||1||3||0||327||0||0||0||-|
|Ellis Plummer||CB||St. Mirren||0||0||0||6||0||0||0||0||-|
A few things to note here. Let's start with Nastasic. He's hit the ground running with Schalke, starting both matches which he's been available for so far. WhoScored says he's averaged 4.5 clearances per game with 86.9% passing accuracy. So he's already starting for a good European side, and we're all probably sad right now.
Now on to Micah, who has had his dreadful loan spell in Italy continue. Seriously, can't the guy catch a break here or there? He's subbed in to two Serie A matches in the last three months, started two Europa League matches (as part of a three-at-the-back) and one Coppa Italia match. Aka, they're not using him at all. Can't really blame La Viola either, but it would have been nice to see Micah head to a club where he'll actually play and attempt to bring his career back to a degree of relevance. How many Premier League sides could he move to in the summer where he could start?
Denayer has continued his excellent spell at Celtic, and Leigh is a vital piece for Crewe, who are using him almost exclusively at LM.
Finally, Karim Rekik. The young Dutch star has been incredible for PSV. He's played in all but one match since he's been at the club, and of the matches he's played, he's played all but 2 minutes. That alone speaks volumes. What's also amazing is that he's amassed a grand total of 2 yellow cards and 0 reds in all of these matches. For a CB, that's rare. According to WhoScored: 2.2 tackles per game, 1.9 interceptions, 6 clearances, 1.1 blocked shots, dribbled past 0.4 times per game, 85.7% pass accuracy. He was recently an unused substitute in Holland's 6-0 Euro 2016 qualifier win over Latvia, too. All this, and he only turned 20 in December. We'll need a CB next season, right? We've got one right here.
Two more small notes- City sent out 18-year old Nigerian RB Chidiebere Nwakali on loan to Malaga until June 2017 as he doesn't have a UK work permit yet. I'm sure we'll hear more about him in time. And CB George Evans was recently loaned to Scunthorpe in League One, where he came on for one minute as a sub in their last match.
|Sinan Bytyqi||CAM/LW||SC Cambuur||4||1||0||0||324||0||1||6.39|
|Scott Sinclair||LW||Aston Villa||0||1||0||0||24||0||0||-|
I left Zuculini off the list because he only just got to Cordoba and hasn't been able to feature for them yet. He also failed to appear in a single match for Valencia since the last report. Hopefully he has a better time in the south of Spain than he did in the east.
Bytyqi, as you might have noticed, has seemingly been sent to Cambuur to fill the shoes of Rusnak, who was sold to Groningen following his spectacular start to the Eredivisie season with Cambuur. Bytyqi, though, hasn't had the same hot start in Dutch football as his predecessor. He's a different type of player from Rusnak, who played slightly deeper on the pitch. Bytyqi operates mostly in advanced positions in the middle or on the wing, preferring quick, intricate play while cutting in from the wing if he's out there.
Fofana has played almost all of his available minutes at Fulham but has found it to be tough sledding so far according to WhoScored. From what I hear from Fulham fans he's raw, a good passer, direct, enthusiastic, etc etc. But he's also a bit sloppy and inconsistent. This is maybe due to the fact that Fulham have used him all over the field in his brief time there so far. No, seriously, all over the field. He's played multiple matches at CDM, CAM, RM, and LM. Thus, I found it easiest to just list him as 'Mid'. Fulham have been playing a diamond midfield, so Fofana's been all over that. He's still got bags of potential and can hopefully develop well enough to help out our aging central midfield core and Fulham in the short term. The London side currently sit in a deep groove of the Championship mid-table, tied on points with five other teams at 34.
Marcos Lopes picked up a tendon problem right after the November loan report, so he has barely featured for Lille since then. He started their last Ligue 1 match, so he's just getting back up to speed. Hopefully I don't jinx it and get him injured again!
And let's not forget the brief Scott Sinclair sighting in the middle of that mauling Villa took at The Emirates.
|Devante Cole||CF||MK Dons||1||2||0||125||2||0|
Overall, the strikers seem to be playing a lot but not doing much. Guidetti has cooled down considerably after his hot start in Glasgow but is still starting nearly all of their matches. Hiwula misfired at Yeovil and is now getting things underway at Walsall. Cole didn't make much of an impact at Barnsley but has started off on the right foot at Milton Keynes. He probably won't live up to the goal scoring record of his father, but he's still only 19.
And that's a wrap on the last 3 months. I will hopefully have another check-up in around another 3 months, when the season is winding down.