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I can’t believe what I’m reading about Allan Saint-Maximin – Unbelievable

1 month ago
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You know what the biggest problem is in this Newcastle United team?

Allan Saint-Maximin.

Yes, you heard it right.

That’s NOT myself saying this by the way!

However, a very significant minority (I hope!) are saying exactly that, just have a look at these below.

Newcastle United fans commenting on Allan Saint-Maximin via Twitter:

‘He’s a maverick. One good game in 10. A luxury we can’t afford.’

‘Cash in on him in January.’

‘Amazing player just needs to pass.’

‘A player that wraps himself in so many bandages to play a game of football doesn’t strike me as a man who is up for a relegation dogfight, would love to think I was wrong but I doubt it.’

‘Loves a blind alley run. Was in LFC pub afterwards and they were all saying you think you should be scared when he gets the ball, but h doesn’t really do anything.’

‘Can’t afford him when we’re fighting relegation.’

‘If he passed the ball when 3 other players overlap him maybe we would score more goals.’

‘He’s a poor man’s Hatem Ben Arfa, who more often than not could be bloody poor himself.’

‘He’s a poor man’s Lua-Lua, and to be honest, I no longer know if I’m referring to Lomana or Kazenga.’

‘Why is his shot so weak and not so good, does he practice improving it?

Why is the player the most lose the ball?

Why is the least player passing the ball?

Why ASM the offensive version of Clark?’

‘A show pony.

How about he kicks the ball in the net a few times and wins some games.’

‘Ask him why he’s such a lazy b.stard.’

‘Allan Saint-Maximin plays for himself, not Newcastle United.’

‘Leave him on bench. Been awful this season.’

‘Don’t need him in a relegation scrap.’

‘Absolutely no end product as far as I can tell.’

‘He’s not been happy since SB left along with the holiday camp. As a very close mate of his, Willock isn’t either and because of this their performance are way below the minimum that’s required. How else can Willock be a shadow of how he played while on loan.’

‘He’s gone missing recently.’

‘Please remember this is a championship squad, largely. New manager in, players are improving, just look at big Joe! Players will improve in time. Robert was shocking for tracking back but he was amazing because we had quality players to make up for it. Give the guy time peeps!’

‘Robert was EXACTLY like Maxi he would show up once every 5 games. HOW ON EARTH do our fans forget how woeful he was for the large majority of his games. Only difference between them is Maxi shows up even less than Robert.’

‘If he’s out, the fickle fans who are hating on him will soon realise why he’s such a loss.’

Honestly, where do you start?

If you think that the biggest problem for Newcastle United is Allan Saint-Maximin this season, then the only problem is you!

Yes, like all other Newcastle players, Allan Saint-Maximin could and should be doing better this season.

However, where would we be without him?

This idea that he is lazy, disinterested, doesn’t care, can’t be bothered etc etc, is absolutely crazy. The vast majority of matches this season, it is Allan Saint-Maximin who has put the most graft in.

I can only assume that most Newcastle fans slagging him off, have never played much football themselves. It is by far the most tiring role to play in a team, when you the only player that carries the ball, gets the team team up the pitch, gets NUFC into the opposition box and so on.

Don’t believe me?

Well here are a few inconvenient facts for you.

Newcastle United players – Direct goal involvement in 2021/22 Premier League season:

6 Allan Saint-Maximin (3 goals, 3 assists)

6 Callum Wilson (6 goals, 0 assists)

3 Javier Manquillo (1 goal, 2 assists)

2 Joelinton (1 goal, 1 assist), Matt Ritchie (0 goals, 2 assists), Jacob Murphy (1 goal, 1 assist)

1 Jeff Hendrick (1 goal), Sean Longstaff (1 goal), Isaac Hayden (1 goal), Jamaal Lascelles (1 goal), Fabian Schar (1 assist), Ciaran Clark (1 assist), Jonjo Shelvey (1 goal), Ryan Fraser (1 assist), Emil Krafth (1 assist)

0 Miguel Almiron, Joe Willock, Jamal Lewis, Federico Fernandez, Dwight Gayle

With the exception of Callum Wilson’s goals, Allan Saint-Maximin is the only player really who scores goals and gets assists in any quantity, certainly this season. Who are you going to give his role to…Javier Manquillo???

I’m going to use a few tables from the excellent ‘Other14‘, they do stats and analysis on the teams and players that are not the ‘big six’ clubs.

Premier League Chances Created 14 December 2021

They haven’t updated since the NUFC defeat at Liverpool but as the table above shows, up to and including the Leicester game, out of the ‘other 14’ clubs, Allan Saint-Maximin had created more chances (26) in open play than any other player, with the exception of Antonio at West Ham, who is having an outstanding season.

Speaking of that game at Leicester, Allan Saint-Maximin completed nine of fifteen take-ons against Leicester, which was more than Leicester and Newcastle players combined.

Against Liverpool it was the usual story, Allan Saint-Maximin the only Newcastle player who got NUFC up the pitch. Despite being (at least) double marked and getting minimal support from teammates, ASM managed 123 yards running forward, despite rarely getting the ball.

This table above is also before the Liverpool match, it shows that up to and including last weekend at Leicester, Allan Saint-Maximin had carried the ball into the opposition penalty area more times (30) than any other player who doesn’t play for a ‘big six’ club.

Yes, there are times where ASM will carry the ball into the opposition box and make the wrong decision BUT plenty of times he doesn’t, as you can see by that earlier stat of him creating more chances in open play (26) for teammates, than anybody else but Antonio at West Ham (of the ‘other 14’).

People are saying that Allan Saint-Maximin hasn’t contributed anything since Eddie Howe arrived. Well, in his very first match, ASM almost single-handedly won it. Getting Brentford on the back foot time after time, Allan Saint-Maximin created the second NUFC goal when his run and shot was blocked and Joelinton scored the rebound, then ASM got the third goal, whilst then in the final stages, Allan Saint-Maximin ran from his own half beating player after player, got into the opposition box and instead of shooting, out it on a plate 12 yards out for the unmarked Joelinton to put it past the keeper and the Brazilian fluffed it.

Yes, Joelinton did pretty well that match overall, I’m not blaming it all on him for that one blunder.

However, along with all the rest (apart from Wilson), Joelinton and the others (Almiron, Willock, Fraser, Shelvey, Hayden, Murphy, Longstaff, whoever…), don’t score or create goals, or at least very rarely they do.

Even if not injured, I think Eddie Howe will only have Allan Saint-Maximin on the bench against Man City, because yet again he gave it his all at Anfield and needs to be looked after, having started every single Premier League game this season.

Yes, sometimes his body language at times doesn’t look the best, but I think that is just the way that he is.

What is important is what he does with the ball and the bottom line is that it is the rest of the team who need to step it up to help Allan Saint-Maximin (and Callum Wilson), not the other way round!

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