Is Miguel Almiron better than Jack Grealish?

November 6, 2022


It’s the question that’s on everybody’s lips right now: is Miguel Almiron better than Jack Grealish?

Well, maybe not everybody, but one throwaway jibe from Grealish while he was on top of the world has made him look a little silly in the present day, with a certain Paraguayan running riot at St James’ Park.

With kids up and down the country now trying to ‘play like Almiron’, let’s see how the pair match up.

If you don’t know the backstory behind this essential comparison of players, the question might be a touch confusing. So let’s clear that up to start with.

Almiron has not always enjoyed the god-like status he is currently revelling in. He managed only nine league goals across his first three seasons in the Premier League after joining in the 2019 January transfer window, with only one coming in the 2021/22 campaign.

Having come across from Major League Soccer with much fanfare and anticipation, the Paraguayan descended to joke status in the first half of 2022 when he was name-dropped by Jack Grealish during Manchester City’s Premier League title celebrations.

Asked what the genius behind their final day victory over Aston Villa was, Grealish responded: “There were two secrets…number one: Riyad [Mahrez]. Take him off the pitch, as soon as possible. He played like [Miguel] Almiron yesterday.

“Number two: [pointing at Silva] He’s been so good this season, get him off the pitch.

“Number three: keep Jack Grealish on the f****** bench.”

“Alexa, play This Charming Man by the Smiths.”

Considering Grealish endured a very typical ‘adaptation’ season following his £100m move from Aston Villa, it was somewhat cheeky for him to poke fun at Almiron.

The England international contributed three goals and three assists in the Premier League in 2021/22, comfortably beating Almiron’s solitary strike but hardly setting the world alight at the Etihad.

Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and Riyad Mahrez were the three City players to post double-digit figures for league goals last season, while Phil Foden, Bernardo Silva, Gabriel Jesus, Ilkay Gundogan, Rodri and Aymeric Laporte all netted more than Grealish.

He did struggle with injury and fitness issues throughout the season, hampering his first year under Pep Guardiola.

Newcastle’s off-field activities were the main point of discussion throughout the 2021/22 Premier League season, with the takeover seeing Steve Bruce depart as manager and Eddie Howe brought in. Callum Wilson and Allan Saint-Maximin were their main goal threats, while January signing Bruno Guimaraes also chipped in.

Miguel Almiron 2021/22 stats (all competitions)

Jack Grealish 2021/22 stats (all competitions)

Manchester City’s scoring has been dominated by one player so far this season – Erling Haaland.

The Norwegian is on course to break all sorts of goalscoring records this season, with Grealish among the supporting cast helping him net strike after strike. Grealish himself has scored just once in 2022/23, putting in a few noteworthy performances against Manchester United, Borussia Dortmund and Copenhagen.

However, his numbers simply pale in comparison to Almiron. Who’d have thought it, eh?

The former Atlanta United star has started every Newcastle game so far and contributed eight goals – seven of which have come in seven appearances throughout October and November. While he blanked against Manchester United in that run, he grabbed a brace at Fulham and also struck Brentford, Everton, Tottenham, Aston Villa and Southampton.

In that run alone, Almiron scored more goals than Grealish has managed in total so far for City.

Miguel Almiron 2022/23 stats (all competitions)

Jack Grealish 2022/23 stats (all competitions)

*As of 6/11/2022

Like…kind of? In current form, there’s absolutely no debate.

Some footballing scholars may disagree, but goals are a great way to measure an attacker’s output; madness, right? And it’s very, very hard to look past the number of goals Almiron is scoring right now in a purring Newcastle side.

But, if we bring things back to reality…Grealish still gets the nod. One player is clearly dunking on the other when it comes to attacking contributions during the 2022/23 season, but there’s another side to the story.

While Almiron has a good strike rate over the course of his career, Grealish has played at a higher level and wowed crowds with his playmaking, vision and dribbling ability. Almiron has won trophies in the past, but none as recognisable as the Premier League title Grealish won – regardless of how big a role he played.

Grealish is still well thought of internationally for his impactful performances at Euro 2020 and is expected to go to Qatar for the World Cup, while Almiron’s Paraguay did not qualify.

We’ll give this one to Grealish – by the skin of his teeth – but as a grouchy veteran manager might say, he needs to buck his ideas up.