Probing Pardew’s four French fancies: 1. Yoan Gouffran

Posted on January 28th, 2013 | 29 Comments |

Newcastle signings - M'biwa, Gouffran Haidara, Sissoko.
Bienvenue à Toon Yoan Gouffran! (second left).
Hello and welcome to the first in my series where I shall be probing the latest batch of French fancies picked up on Graham Carr’s Eurostar shopping trips to Lille.

I will be looking at the latest four signings in no particular order, who were Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Yoan Gouffran, Massadio Haïdara and Moussa Sissoko. There was of course a fifth who came before them, Mathieu Debuchy, but the pursuit of him went on for so long that I have already written several pieces about him, including this one where I looked at Debuchy in comparison with Newcastle United’s existing first choice right back, Danny Simpson, when Debuchy was still a Lille player. Hence, I will leave him on the backburner for now.

So without further ado I will move on to the first of our French foursome, Yoan Gouffran, purchased from our Group D Europa League opponents, Girondins de Bordeaux for a highly cut price fee of €2.5 million, which converts to around £2.1 million at current exchange rates. This was because Gouffran’s contract at Bordeaux was due to expire in the Summer anyway and he was already free to reach a pre contract agreement with another club which could have seen him leave Bordeaux for nothing in the Summer. Let’s start by getting his statistics out the way!

Vital Statistics.

Age: 26
Height: 5′ 9 1⁄2″
Positions: Centre Forward / left, right sided forward and attacking midfield.

Yoan Gouffran’s career stats.
SM Caen (all competitions).
Years App Gls Ass YC RC MPl MPG
2003/8 115 33 7 9 9320 282
Girondins de Bordeaux (all competitions).
Season App Gls Ass YC RC MPl MPG
2008/13 179 40 18 11 11258 281
France U19 App Gls Ass YC RC MPl MPG
4 1 141 141
France U21 3 1 216 216
Total (2003-13).
App Gls Ass YC RC MPl MPG
301 75 25 20 20935 279
App – Appearences, Gls – Goals, Ass – Assists, YC – Yellow Cards RC – Red Cards, MPl – Minutes Played, MPG – Minutes Per Goal.

Gouffran’s style of play.

Though not a hugely prolific goalscorer (on a minutes per goal scored basis his average is around the same as Shola Ameobi’s), he is quite a good finisher who also has some experience playing on either side of a front three, or as an attacking midfielder or second striker playing off a hitman at the front, a bit more like a Ben Arfa than a Ba or a Cisse. Having written that, he has played nearly all his games in the last two seasons at Bordeaux in a centre forward role. His passing is also pretty good though perhaps his crossing is possibly a slightly weaker area. He has good speed, is comfortable with the ball at his feet and his hold up play is good. Being something of a midfielder too, he can also drop slightly deeper during games if necessary and can also be something of a threat on set pieces. But let’s hear from Yoan himself speaking after his move to Newcastle. He began on the pressure of following on from Demba Ba at first saying:

“There is no real added pressure because Demba Ba has gone. I’m an attacker, yes I want to score goals but we are different style of players. Each to their own. My big assets is speed. I’m fast and I score goals. My main position is centre-forward but I can play to the side or behind a striker if I have to, I can adapt my style of play if I like. I have spoken with the manager and he told me how he wants to use me.”

Meanwhile, his one time Montpellier opponent and now Newcastle United teammate, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa (the subject of one of my foollowing pieces in this series too), had this to say on Gouffran’s style:

“I have met him several times, and played against him in the French league. He is the type of player that gives us defenders a lot of work, he makes us work very hard. He runs deep, collects the ball, and holds it up very well. He lets the team get forward, and gives the team chances to counter attack. He’s good on the ball, and that would be something very useful for the team.”

Looking at his most recent games for Bordeaux before he joined Newcastle United, he had an excellent scoring spell for Les Girondins between late October and the beginning of December, scoring six goals in eight games. Fortunately for we Toon fans, one of the games he didn’t score in during that period was in Bordeaux’s very disappointing performance against us in our first Europa League game at St James’ Park, which we won 3-0. A more barren spell followed from early December until now however, with Gouffran scoring only one in seven appearences.

Injury Record.

Good. Gouffran’s last injury was a Malleolar (ankle) injury sustained back in February 2011. This kept him out for a lengthy period, around four months. However since then he seems to have been fine and he’s certainly no “ticking time bomb.” One odd little curiousity about Gouffran which you may have heard already though is that he is a footballer who is allergic to grass! It doesn’t seem to have caused him any problems in his game at all though so no worries there.

Gouffran on video.

Alot of the YouTube compilations of Gouffran are very old ones of a very youthful Gouffran from four or five years back. The video below is a far more recent one. Although the TV studio looks pretty fancy, it is from his previous club’s web TV station. For non French speakers out there, the dialogue is only for the first few seconds then it soon moves on to a compilation of hot Gouffran action.

Yoan Gouffran – “Club House spécial Gouffran.”

Finally, here is a shorter compilation of recent Gouffran action.

Yoan Gouffran – Welcome To Newcastle.

Before I go, just a quick word on the new poll below. Originally we had one which only covered M’Biwa, Gouffran and Haidara when they were signed in quick succession, however I have now updated the old poll so it now includes all five signing of the January transfer window so far including first signing, Mathieu Debuchy, along with the most recent who was only signed just after the original poll was published, Moussa Sissoko.


NUFCBlog Author: workyticket workyticket has written 1093 articles on this blog.

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29 Responses

  1. Nice write up. Credit where credits due. I think i read he’s actually allergic to trees not grass.

  2. I’ve just sussed why so many French players are so keen to come to Newcastle yesterday when I was watching this. Don’t know why I didn’t make the connection before.

    François Hollande’s 75% tax plan for those with incomes above €1 million.

  3. a good write up, and a lot of statistics thrown in for good measure.
    i’ve only seen glimpes of this player, and he kind of reminds me of craig bellamy, in the fact he doesn’t score lots of goals.
    he is quick and can get down the sides, and in behind people, and most importantly, he creates things for his team mates.
    he can also play in the three up front, which is where we have been lacking.
    he will score important goals though, a bit like the welsh terror, who gave defenders a nightmare, home and away.

    we used to win a lot of games away from home, because we used to give the ball to bellamy, and he would drive straight at the opposition, so lets hope gouffran can hit the ground running, and do the same.

  4. sirjasontoon, it’s all about opinions lol, we’ve got to give the lad a chance though, if he fails, we fail!.

  5. sirjasontoon says:
    January 29, 2013 at 12:05 pm

    “Yoan Gouffran is a pile of w@nk according to a lad at work.”

    SJT, He had a fluorescent “70% OFF!!!” tag on him so stop moaning! :-)

  6. Hahah the lad at work follows the European game so I couldn’t argue with him as I know nowt about him :lol:

    I hope he’s another Obertwang #awesome

  7. some of the sayings these days crack me up.
    how does one go about visualising, describing, or illustrating, “a pile of w@nk”?
    it will have to go up alongside the yeti, the loch ness monster, the mothman, aliens etc, it’s a mystery…

  8. joe hawkins says:
    January 29, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    “some of the sayings these days crack me up.
    how does one go about visualising, describing, or illustrating, “a pile of w@nk”?”

    Reminds me a bit of Bill Hicks’s routine about the Yank “right to life” lot, where he somehow gets into talking about masturbation and how he wiped whole civilisations off his chest with his grey gym sock, and how entire nations flaked and crusted in the hair around his navel.

    I’m off for lunch now.

  9. Love the Suck Satan’s C0ck routine proper funny :lol:
    Was planning on going to Vile tonight but non of my mates want to go..can pay on the door as well in the toon end.
    Proper 5hitHole been a few times for past Toon games.

  10. Droopy Dog on Sissoko:

    “Sissoko’s a fantastic signing. I’d liked to have got him but Newcastle have absolutely nicked him,” he said.

    “The figures were very high but it still worked out cheap as there was no transfer fee. But he’s a good signing and I think Newcastle will do well with the players they have signed.

    “He’s a real powerhouse and will be a really good player in England.”

  11. worky, beautifully illustrated.
    sirjasontoon, it baffles me how an old crook like deputy dawg, is a media darling, it must be because his son is flavour of the month with sky sports.
    hell crooked bankers are socially acceptable, why not a shady sandbank dwelling, dodging dealing, arthur daley, of a football manager.

  12. Yeah Joe totally agree.
    A proper Bandit with a face like a steaming pile of horse vomit (visuals).

  13. Old ‘Arry doesn’t like the limelight. No way will he be rolling his window down for Sky on Thursday. How the hell does he know what Sissoko’s contract is? Agents, I think. And what was ‘Arry complaining about yesterday – Agents.

    He is a crook and a two faced c*nt. Although one of his face is more than enough.

  14. Children Pleeeze !
    Enough with the 12 year old boy’s locker-room talk, grow up fer chrisake.
    It started out as an informative blog about Goofy and quickly went downhill, ffs grow up!

  15. Workey

    You surprise me @13#, thats disgusting.
    Why dont you get off your duff and provide a pre game blog, with probable lineups etc.
    Instead of joining the children in seeing who could be the most digusting.