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Former England International Spots Two Areas Of Improvement For Dynamic Forward


Allan Saint-Maximin has been arguably Newcastle’s best player since he returned from his hamstring injury and Steve Bruce inserted him into the starting eleven against Manchester United in the first week of October.

He’s become a fan darling with his electric pace and explosive runs. While he’s not offering the final ball we need at the moment, he’s creating potential chances that just weren’t there before his inclusion in the team.

This past weekend, Man City’s Kyle Walker was Allan’s latest toy as he ran the 29-year-old ragged when in possession. The England international was often left no other option than to hack down the Frenchman.


It’s his ability to cause the opposition so much distress while drawing in two to three defenders that Newcastle need to start taking advantage of. While Allan could do a better job of spotting teammates running into the space he creates, his fellow runners also need to get into that space with more urgency.

Allan is going to be a frustrating player at times, but hopefully, he will start to get some goals and assists over the next few months. Though, even without them, he is still a positive influence on Newcastle’s attack.

Another area that we feel Allan could improve is in his defensive work. Though to be honest, based on his reputation in France, we have been pleasantly surprised by Allan’s tracking back.

While he doesn’t show the same dogged determination as his counterpart Miguel Almiron does on the right, Allan is certainly not derelict in his defensive commitments. We feel he’s formed a good partnership with Jetro Willems on the left flank.

Former England goalkeeper Paul Robinson speaking to Football Insider believes that the 22-year-old needs to do more in both phases of the game. He thinks Allan needs to improve his decision-making in attack as well as in his defensive duties.

This is what Robinson had to say after the Manchester City draw about the French winger:

“He’d drive me mad if he was in my team, I’d be on his case constantly because he’s so quick, he’s got such electrifying pace and he’s got such talent as well.

“But he just needs a little more composure with his decision-making, his final ball, as he has so much talent but his decision-making in the final third lets him down.

“And I do think he forgets his defensive duties sometimes when he’s playing on the left-side of that midfield I think he has to be reminded of his role to trackback.”

We agree to an extent with what Robinson has to say. However, we think the signs are there that Allan is going to get better the more he plays. We are pleasantly surprised by his contributions thus far.

He is a far more willing worker than the reputation that accompanied him from France led us to believe. While he does frustrate with some of his decisions, his highlight reel runs are worth the price of admission.

What Will Be The Result Of The Match At Sheffield United?

  • Draw (37%, 459 )
  • Win (36%, 443 )
  • Loss (27%, 336 )

Total Voters: 1,238

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Who Are Newcastle's Best Three Center-Backs

  • Schar (32%, 927 )
  • Lejeune (28%, 800 )
  • Fernandez (21%, 611 )
  • Lascelles (14%, 391 )
  • Clark (4%, 117 )
  • Dummett (2%, 48 )

Total Voters: 984

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24 comments so far

  • G

    Dec 3, 2019 at 1:45 PM

    Comment #1

    He certainly has a yard of pace, and like the late great SBR, I do love a bit of pace. End product does need work, but if he keeps terrifying defenders the way he does, then I’m happy for him to continue.

    3
  • RobLeenio

    Dec 3, 2019 at 1:53 PM

    Comment #2

    Chancel, I’m with you, I think a draw vs Sheff Utd will be a good result. Easily one of the more tricky away matches outside of the big six this season.

    Then again, I thought a 2-0 loss vs Man City would be a good result, so what do I know?

    0
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:02 PM

    Comment #3

    Rob there you go again, talking about a post out of context like it wasn’t there to be found or remembered so yeah you have touched a nerve calling me a liar and hypocrite. –

    “It’s funny how the acceptance of mediocrity has washed over so many fans. An absolute gift to Ashley because this is exactly what he has always wanted. A throng of cheap-sock buyers happy to reuse and recycle every season and accept the product just isn’t top notch anymore.”

    Get someone to help you read it and see where I was actually accusing fans of being cheap-sock buyers. I said this is what Ashley aspires to as an effect of apathy. You are a cheap-shot toad though aren’t you? Hoping everyone reading this follows your specious narrative.

    And just stop with the “there are better protesters than you” rubbish. I don’t know anything of your “sacrifice” but I don’t call you a liar or try and belittle it. And if you’re going to accuse me of falling short, try finding where I said to anyone to do anything else and come back.

    Put the shovel down.

    6
  • Unused Substitute

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:15 PM

    Comment #4

    A win against SU is possible with a strong and disruptive backbone down the middle, speed on the flanks and going wide and direct. Since those may not happen, a draw would be more than enough.

    2
  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:25 PM

    Comment #5

    He’s the most exciting player we’ve had since Ben Arfa. Maybe the only exciting player since Ben Arfa. I remember reading Ben Arfa was the only player to get more succesful dribbles than ASM in France last season.

    1
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:26 PM

    Comment #6

    We’ve seen a few teams like this over the years because we’ve been promoted with some of them. They burst into the premiership with boundless energy and determination to be in the league come season end. Problems begin when their squad is stretched through an exhausting season, injuries come and years of championship finance means little in the pot to buy anyone to help them into the run-in. A couple of defeats and a slump then ensues.

    I don’t think sheff it’s are quite at that stage yet, so given their eagerness to show us they are worthy, I agree, a draw away from home anywhere on a blustery Thursday night would be good for us, steady the wobbly ship and get our heads down for the all important crimbo speed bump. We need to be clear by a few good wins of the bottom three come January.

    2
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:26 PM

    Comment #7

    NY Mag

    31

    2
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:28 PM

    Comment #8

    “It’s” was supposed to be “Utd” but at least it had an apostrophe in it. 😉

    1
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:29 PM

    Comment #9

    OP

    I got your ‘Waiting For God–‘ pun!

    We’re good at waiting for something that never arrives!

    1
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:34 PM

    Comment #10

    ASM has bags of confidence which in Ben Arfas case was an unfortunate overload sometimes, sublime and surreal in brilliance the next. I watched ASM get himself cleanly away from the attentions of two city players from what looked like an absolute certainty he would be easily dispossessed. The beauty of being able to do that is it demoralises the opposition and makes them play much more resevervedly because they are scared at what he might do. I just wish our midfield was assertive enough to allow him to start to play further up the pitch. If he was approaching at angles starting just outside the D I reckon the goals would pour in! 🙂 As it is he is collecting way to deep and runs out of steam three quarters of the game gone.

    5
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:36 PM

    Comment #11

    BnB

    Aye that’s more or less what I said yesterday with my express train analogy! 🙂

    2
  • RobLeenio

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:37 PM

    Comment #12

    I’m sorry, Tsunki lad, but that doesn’t read any better second time round than it did the first. You’re calling out people who don’t agree with you for accepting mediocrity and then suggesting that this is what Ashley wanted all along. I don’t know how you can say that isn’t offensive, no matter how you couch it.

    I agree that you’ve done something to protest and of course it matters and should be applauded, but it doesn’t give you the right to beat on your fellow fans who haven’t made the same sacrifices. We’re all in the same boat here. I’d suggest you take a leaf out of hibbit’s book who has done the same as you but doesn’t beat up all and sundry who haven’t.

    With regards calling you a liar, I’d like to know when and where I did that. I think you’ve been too honest, if anything.

    As for my shovel, whilst your still spouting your sh!te I’ll keep it handy, thanks very much.

    8
  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:37 PM

    Comment #13

    BnB

    Comment 6 I meant!

    0
  • Bills Son Is Back

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:52 PM

    Comment #14

    ASM player of the season so far?

    Yes he has made a few very exciting runs and he gets the crowd on their feet but in terms of overall contribution to the team he is a mile behind Al in my opinion.

    The work Al does defensively is incredible and he is often the one who carries it from deep in our half into the oppo’s or plays good passes in our half that set a forward move away.

    Willems has made a massive difference to our threat down the left and his calm control in tight situations has got us out of numerous poor positions defensively – and he has scored two crackers.

    Clark has come in and done a great job, and scored, and Fede has been magnificent since he got the nod.

    ASM in my opinion, whilst exciting in flashes and full of promise, is a good way behind the four players above in performances overall so far this season.

    4
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 2:58 PM

    Comment #15

    Aye Rob I can hear beeping sounds while you type. You stick to your guns why not.

    3
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 3:04 PM

    Comment #16

    And you can refuse to read it right if you want but I’m not calling anything but what it is. Apathy is rife, tell me how many thousands there are attending the matches. How many are watching on sky? How many of this season shirts do you count in Newcastle on any given day (that is if you do go there?) Have you counted the customers with Mike’s branded gear on lately?

    You just don’t like someone with freedom of speech do you? Where’s your right to tell me not to tell others what they should do? Figure that out. 😉

    2
  • The next Mike Williamson

    Dec 3, 2019 at 3:08 PM

    Comment #17

    Billson,
    I really like Almiron too. I’m hoping if we get Bowen and he starts scoring it will take pressure off the others. Somebody somewhere has got to start looking like they might get at least 5 goals because I can almost guarentee the defenders won’t keep scoring.

    0
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 3:09 PM

    Comment #18

    I think Robinson is wrong there mind, but then he was a keeper not a midfielder so he would’ve liked all ten to track back 🙂

    Attacking players shouldn’t be expected to waste vital energy chugging up and down the field, it’s only because of defensive deficiency it has to be done in our case. Some defensive harrying around misfiled, yes, but coming back to mark the far post from minute one that’s just the sign of a desperate squad. He should always be able to start running with advantage from late in midfield. Tired runs in the second part of the second half just won’t cut it.

    1
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 3:10 PM

    Comment #19

    Misfiled? Ha ha there’s a bit of auditing coming out there – I meant midfield.

    0
  • Bills Son Is Back

    Dec 3, 2019 at 3:11 PM

    Comment #20

    Tsunki,

    Fans who go to the matches are apethetic?

    And you call others arrogant.

    Do what the hell you want and think what the hell you want about YOUR attitude to attending games but keep your pompous arrogant opinions on what 40,000+ fans do every home game to yourself.

    6
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 3:30 PM

    Comment #21

    Wind it in bills son you’ll choke on your watery porridge. I’m saying that apathy to Ashley is rife because collectively all those things are happening as mentioned despite the last twelve years blatantly telling us that we are not in the business of doing anything but exist in the pl. It just is – it’s less of an accusation than a sad fact. Attendances are rising because we have won a few games. It’s a fact they will probably continue to do so and Ashley’s income will continue to be healthy despite the product being deliberately moderated. At season end if we are just out of relegation or around mid table it will be hailed as a success – something previous managers were sacked for. You tell me what else that is if it isn’t apathy. Go on give it a shot but don’t put your hip out.

    4
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 3:33 PM

    Comment #22

    I notice you didn’t round on jib every time he plainly rounded on our fans with proper real-world insults, but you ragingly started foaming and spitting because you confused apathy with pathos.

    4
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 3:33 PM

    Comment #23

    Hard to keep opinions to yourself on a blog though isn’t it old fella? 😉

    2
  • Bleatin' n Bruced

    Dec 3, 2019 at 3:37 PM

    Comment #24

    I’m not the one with the bulging forehead veins and eye-twitching glare here. I’m just the one shaking my head at a sad spectacle, the result of over a decade of conditioning by Ashley’s merchandising and PR. The fans have been tested as to their resolve and Ashley continues to push them further and further, and it looks like there’s nothing beyond his will to do, he’s got away with everything so far.

    3

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