Newcastle United: Jamie Redknapp unimpressed with Allan Saint-Maximin
Newcastle United winger Allan Saint-Maximin’s first-half display against West Ham United was “hugely disappointing”, according to Jamie Redknapp.
The Lowdown: Newcastle’s first half
Eddie Howe’s side flew out of the traps in the first half of their Premier League clash, with Callum Wilson opening the scoring with a well-taken finish after three minutes.
Wilson’s goal came just moments after Joe Willock thought he’d given Newcastle the lead inside a minute, but following a VAR check, the ball was correctly adjudged to have gone out of play before Miguel Almiron hooked it back into Willock’s path.
However, the Irons hit back brilliantly with Lucas Paqueta netting a deserved equaliser just after the half-hour mark, with commentator Andy Hinchcliffe saying minutes before half-time on Sky Sports: “West Ham are dominating at the moment, they are the better team.”
The Latest: Redknapp disappointed
Speaking as a pundit on Sky Sports’ coverage, Redknapp singled out Saint-Maximin as one of the Magpies’ poorest performers and claimed he could be hooked off sharpishly in the second 45, saying:
“Saint-Maximin has been hugely disappointing – I think he will be Newcastle’s first change…”
The Verdict: Redknapp proved right
With Newcastle unable to wrestle control of the game back, let alone go back in front, the 25-year-old was indeed the first player to be withdrawn as he was replaced by new signing Anthony Gordon for his debut.
Saint-Maximin has struggled to get back into the Newcastle side since his injury lay-off that kept him out of eight games through September and October, and this was his first start since. However, he failed to make anything like the impact he or Howe would have hoped for.
The Frenchman had just 34 touches in the 69 minutes of action with a poor 65% pass accuracy and zero completed crosses alongside zero key passes (via Sofascore), showing how ineffective he was in unlocking any openings for the hosts.
With Gordon now arriving at St James’ Park, Saint-Maximin could well struggle for more minutes in a position he is already only being used as an impact substitute, with this outing surely not putting him further up in Howe’s plans.