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Opinion

Steve Bruce completely lost without Allan Saint-Maximin – Stats say Newcastle a one man team

3 weeks ago
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Allan Saint-Maximin was at his very best for Newcastle United against Burnley.

Or maybe that should be…Newcastle United were at their best on Saturday night because of Allan Saint-Maximin.

The 23 year old a constant threat as the visitors couldn’t handle him, the French winger creating the opening goal out of nothing, then when Newcastle went defensive and invited Burnley on to score their equaliser, ASM quickly stepped up again with a superb run and final pass that meant Callum Wilson was faced with an open goal.

Last season it was very much a case of the only attacking tactics being to give the ball to Allan Saint-Maximin and hope he does something.

For all Newcastle United were better all over the pitch than the last couple of Premier League games, it was against very poor opposition and if we’re honest, still very little goal threat unless Allan Saint-Maximin was involved.

Fact is, that the entire time he was on the pitch, Allan Saint-Maximin was faced by two or more opponents and almost every run he made either helped set up a promising move forward, or ended up with him being hacked to the ground. It was quite embarrassing how cynical Burnley were and even more embarrassing that whilst the referee booked others for offences against ASM, Bardsley somehow didn’t get a yellow card.

After winning the match for Newcastle with his goal and assist, Burnley were clearly physically relieved when Allan Saint-Maximin was eventually subbed.

That is what our eyes saw but what about the stats?

Are Newcastle United a one man team and is Steve Bruce completely lost without him?

These are the PL matches where Allan Saint-Maximin was able to start last (2019/20) season:

Played 23 Won 10 Drawn 6 Lost 7 Points 36 Goals For 29 Goals Against 27

This is Newcastle United’s PL record last (2019/20) season when Allan Saint-Maximin wasn’t able to start:

Played 15 Won 1 Drawn 5 Lost 9 Points 8 Goals For 9 Goals Against 31

Games this (2020/21) season so far with ASM starting:

Played 3 Won 2 Drawn 0 Lost 1 Points 6 Goals For 5 Goals Against 4

Games this (2020/21) season so far without ASM starting:

Played 1 Won 0 Drawn 1 Lost 0 Points 1 Goals For 1 Goals Against 1

OVERALL TOTALS AT NUFC WITH ASM STARTING:

Played 26 Won 12 Drawn 6 Lost 8 Points 42 Goals For 34 Goals Against 31

OVERALL TOTALS AT NUFC WITHOUT ASM STARTING:

Played 16 Won 1 Drawn 6 Lost 9 Points 9 Goals For 10 Goals Against 32

As you can see, a bit of a difference…

ASM clearly isn’t the finished article, which is maybe the most exciting thing, as in much more to come in the future.

However, even at this stage he turns Newcastle into a far better and effective team when he plays, fact.

Are Newcastle United a one man team?

Well, Newcastle maybe have a functional team but without Allan Saint-Maximin starting, it is questionable as to whether there is anything like enough goal threat.

Even though Callum Wilson is looking a really good buy, like all strikers he needs service. Without Allan Saint-Maximin in the team I would really doubt whether he can get enough of it. Hopefully the players can prove this viewpoint wrong this season when ASM is missing, though they certainly haven’t been able to do it during these 15 months since Allan Saint-Maximin arrived at St James Park.

The statistics above are overwhelming…when Allan Saint-Maximin starts, Newcastle have better results, create more chances, score more goals and concede less.

When he isn’t in the starting eleven, Newcastle are very predictable and have little / no cutting edge, even conceding far more goals.

Even against such poor opposition on the night such as Burnley, would Newcastle have won without Allan Saint-Maximin?

I know what I think.

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