Emi Buendia: A player reborn
Buendia looks to pull the strings (Photo: Getty Images)

As the Autumn weeks ticked into Winter wilderness, Argentine showboater Emiliano Buendia was going through a spell of tepid form, compounded with being hooked on the hour mark against Watford, the 23-year old a figure of discontent.

Buendia would ensure a spell on the sidelines, just 24 minutes in three matches as November turned to December.

But, exactly one month on from that terrible night against the sting of the Hornets, Buendia has reshaped himself to manufacture the most chances in a calendar month since Opta records began - a worthy contender for Premier League Player of the Month, despite barely featuring in the first two matches of December.

Point to prove

The former Argentina Under-20 international from Mar del Plata was reintroduced to the Norwich starting eleven against Sheffield United.

After an early period in the campaign of sulking and stropping on the pitch, Buendia had clearly filtered his frustrations of Norwich's season thus far into a desire of pressing around the midfield areas and getting on the ball as much as possible.

He would register no less than a staggering 114 touches against the Blades, completing five key passes in the process - his number of touches on the ball totalled 25 more than his nearest teammate or opponent.

Although his time in possession dwindled against high-flying Leicester City in the next game, Buendia averaged a key pass every 12 touches. This time, he would equate one of his five into an assist for Teemu Pukki in a solid 1-1 draw.

And against Wolves, Buendia provided an unstoppable creative masterclass - 9 key passes across 90 minutes with 98 touches - over 25% more than any other player on the pitch. Norwich still couldn't register three points, though.

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22 to 23

Whilst Norwich continued to struggle for form as the Christmas turkey settled, Buendia maintained his solo quest for survival, again producing five key passes against Aston Villa on Boxing Day - just hours after his 23rd birthday.

But he has since provided assists in consecutive games to earn points against Tottenham Hotspur and Crystal Palace - his tackle and through ball versus the former synonymous of Buendia's form over the last month.

Once again, in both matches, Buendia enjoyed more touches of the ball than any other player in his team, formulating a third assist in just five matches.

To put into context Buendia's improved form since being dropped from the starting eleven, the Argentine has developed 5.2 key passes per game in the last six - double his previous tally before November which was still third in the top-flight.

That figure is a 40% improvement on Kevin De Bruyne's 3.7 key passes per game for the season. A key pass every 17 minutes.

Football Heaven.

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