'Frustrating' Allan Saint-Maximin could be new Laurent Robert or next Florian Thauvin, warns expert

Allan Saint-Maximin could turn out to be the next Laurent Robert at Newcastle United – but he could just as easily turn into the next Florian Thauvin.

Thursday, 26th September 2019, 6:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 26th September 2019, 6:00 pm
NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - AUGUST 03: Allan Saint-Maximin of Newcastle United vies with Harod Moukoudi of As Saint-Etienne during the Pre-Season Friendly match between Newcastle United and AS Saint - Etienne at St. James Park on August 03, 2019 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

That’s the view of French football expert Rich Allen of Get French Football News.

Saint-Maximin looks set to be handed only his second start in black and white after an injury-hit start to life on Tyneside.

And while his cameos have got people talking this season, Allen warns fans to treat Saint-Maximin with caution – if his days at Nice last season are anything to go by.

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Nice's French midfielder Allan Saint-Maximin celebrates opening the scoring during the French L1 football match Nice (OGCN) vs Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) on March 18, 2018 at the Allianz Riviera stadium in Nice. / AFP PHOTO / Valery HACHE (Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)

Newcastle fans may very quickly see what many mean when they say he will continue the theme of frustrating players moving to England,” he said.

“He is another who is full of confidence, has a bag of tricks and will occasionally do something fantastic. However there will also be many moments of him pulling off those tricks only to not deliver a final product or run down a dead end.

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“He certainly is a character but is someone who needs to focus on his football. Towards the end of his time with Nice, it looked like he was getting distracted by the bright lights and big name clubs being linked with a move for him. He is still young though and so has plenty of time.”

Newcastle have a history of heading across the channel for frustrating, enigmatic Frenchman – and Allen believes Saint-Maximin fits perfectly into that United mould.

“It will go one of two ways – he could be a new (Laurent) Robert or quite easily just the next (Florian) Thauvin,” said Allen.

“It is difficult to say if he will be a success in England – it’s not the easiest time to be playing for Newcastle.

“He’ll need time but I’m not sure with the money spend on him, if he will get it. Many in France follow a similar view. It was good money for Nice to get for a player who was hit and miss too often.”