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Newcastle: Chris Waugh hints at two changes v Southampton

Newcastle: Chris Waugh hints at two changes v Southampton -Newcastle United News

Allan Saint-Maximin and Bruno Guimaraes could start for Newcastle against Southampton on Thursday, according to The Athletic‘s Chris Waugh. 

The lowdown

The Magpies travel to the south coast later in the week looking to extend their fine run of form. Eddie Howe’s men beat Brighton 2-1 last time out to make it eight games unbeaten and move seven points clear of the drop zone.

Saint-Maximin hasn’t started since the 1-0 victory over Aston Villa last month, missing two matches with a minor injury before returning as a substitute against the Seagulls.

Meanwhile, Guimaraes has only played 39 minutes across five runouts from the bench since his £40m move from Lyon in January.

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The latest

Waugh thinks that Saint-Maximin could make his return to the starting line-up at St Mary’s, with Jacob Murphy dropping to the bench. He also expects Guimaraes to soon get a run of starts given Howe’s inclination to rotate.

In a Q&A for The Athletic, he stated: “In terms of Guimaraes, I think there is a good chance he will start one or more of the next few games, yeah. His composure on the ball may be crucial in away matches, and Howe has already hinted at rotation, so I think there’s a good chance we’ll see him start soon.

“As for Saint-Maximin, he would likely come in for Murphy, I feel. Not today, I suspect, but possibly at Southampton.”

Waugh added that Guimareas could slot in alongside Jonjo Shelvey in a revised 4-2-3-1 shape, stating that the “exciting” system was trialled when the 24-year-old came on against Brentford last month.

The verdict

Newcastle’s return of seven points from the past three matches is all the more impressive when you consider that Saint-Maximin hasn’t been able to start. The Frenchman has recorded more goal involvements (eight – five goals and three assists) than anybody else in the Magpies’ squad this season (via BBC Sport).

With perhaps their most dangerous player, along with the second-biggest signing in the club’s history, to potentially come into the line-up, they should have more than enough to secure safety in the coming weeks and further extend their already impressive unbeaten run.

In other news, Newcastle have held talks over a move for this rising star

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Article title: Newcastle: Chris Waugh hints at two changes v Southampton

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