Saint-Maximin fails to impress in Newcastle’s latest win
Journalist Liam Kennedy has admitted he was far from impressed with Allan Saint-Maximin’s first-half showing in Newcastle United’s latest victory.
The Lowdown: Chaotic win for Newcastle
Newcastle were involved in a chaotic evening at the City Ground which saw VAR step in to rule out a goal from Elliot Anderson despite a lot of confusion around why it was not allowed to stand.
It certainly wasn’t all simple for the Magpies as they saw Saint-Maximin hooked off at half-time after he failed to register a single shot in the opening 45 minutes, while he only touched the ball a staggering 20 times (Sofascore).
Eddie Howe spoke post-match about how Saint-Maximin had felt something in his hamstring, so he was perhaps carrying a muscle knock in the opening exchanges of the match, but he didn’t seem his usual self.
The Latest: Saint-Maximin fails to impress
Kennedy – who was at the City Ground on Friday night – spoke after the game about Saint-Maximin and how there is something just isn’t quite right with the Frenchman after his latest showing.
He said: “I thought that was the best Newcastle United performed as a team since Christmas, probably. I thought that was overall the best performance.
“There were a couple of off-days, Botman; Saint-Maximin, there’s something not right with that today. Botman just had a really bad day at the office, it happens.”
The Verdict: Howe must manage Saint-Maximin carefully
It has been a staggering fall from grace for Saint-Maximin over the last 12 months, as he has gone from a player who was relied upon so heavily at Newcastle during the Steve Bruce era to having started just nine league games all season and earning a 4/10 rating for his latest display from Newcastle World’s Jordan Cronin.
The Frenchman was even being tipped with a move to Tottenham Hotspur last summer and talking about trying to win a spot in France’s World Cup squad at the back end of last year, and now he’s getting hooked off at half-time.
Now, with the likes of Elliot Anderson starring against Forest and Jacob Murphy starting back-to-back games in the league, Howe must be careful to not push Saint-Maximin out of the spotlight too much and manage his ego, because he could still be very valuable in the final few games of the season.