Saturday, October 1, 2022

Mills Labels This Newcastle United Winger As A ‘Very Valuable Asset’: Is He Worth It?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent interview with Football Insider, Danny Mills has labelled Newcastle United winger Allan Saint-Maximin as a ‘very valuable asset’ after he penned a new six-year contract at St. James’ Park earlier this month. Mills said, “What happens is that other clubs start to go ‘Ooh, let’s have a little look, we quite like him, I think he might suit us.’

“Newcastle have been quite clever and thought ‘Right, let’s tie him down, let’s get it done and dusted and then if somebody does want to buy him and take him away from us then we’ve got a very valuable asset’ because he’s been tied down for a long-term period.”

Saint-Maximum’s Glowing Reputation At St. James’ Park

The 23-year-old has made a promising start to this Premier League campaign after scoring one goal and providing one assist in five appearances for the Magpies so far across multiple competitions. The French wing wizard managed to establish himself as a fan-favourite at Newcastle as he produced a string of eye-catching displays in the previous campaign when he registered four goals and seven assists in 30 matches on all fronts.

Saint-Maximin was one of Steve Bruce’s standout players last season and performed impeccably to average 1.8 shots, 1.3 key passes and 4.7 dribbles per game in the English first division. He also retained the ball relatively well when distributing it in the opposition half as evident from his pass success rate of 79.1% in the 2019-20 Premier League season (stats via whoscored).

Mills labels Newcastle's Saint-Maximin as a 'very valuable asset' (Saint-Maximin is seen in the photo)
Allan Saint-Maximin of Newcastle United celebrates after scoring his team’s first goal during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Burnley at St. James Park on October 03, 2020, in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. Sporting stadiums around the UK remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Peter Powell – Pool/Getty Images)

What Are The French Wide Player’s Best Attributes?

Saint-Maximin is one of the quickest players in Premier League football which makes him such a constant nuisance for the opposition defenders. The Frenchman has made a habit of completing some dangerous dribbles with the ball towards the opponent’s penalty area. He has also shown that he can score and assist his fair share of goals from the wide areas.

However, Newcastle’s decision to tie him up on a new contract seems a bit premature for a player who has only been at the Tyneside club for a little over a year. Plus, he lacks the strength to keep hold of possession at times in the opposition half, which can sometimes make him a liability, especially when his teammates are not playing well on the pitch.

Is Saint-Maximin Worthy Of Such High Praise From Mills?

If Saint-Maximin can show a few signs of progress this season, then he could very well justify Newcastle’s faith in him by becoming a top performer for them in the years to come. At the moment, there is no doubt that he is a valuable asset in Bruce’s squad. Hence, Saint-Maximin is well-worth Danny Mills’ high praise and should use his words as motivation to improve himself and reach for the stars in the coming seasons.

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