Newcastle United have a 'plan' for Allan Saint-Maximin

The World Cup break has come at the wrong time for Allan Saint-Maximin.

Newcastle United’s winger – who had a spell out with a hamstring problem – returned to fitness ahead of a five-week break in the domestic calendar for the tournament in Qatar.

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Now, the winger – who played 90 minutes in the club’s Carabao Cup win over Crystal Palace last week – must maintain his fitness ahead of the restart. Howe believes that the 25-year-old will benefit from the time on the training pitch, having had limited sessions with the group because of the club’s fixture calendar.

"Every player has an individual plan, based around the group work that we do, because they're all so different in terms of their physiology,” said United's head coach.

“I think Maxi will really benefit from the time to train, because he hasn't had a lot of training time. It's been difficult for him, because, of course, the closer you get to games, the more you have to rest their load or lighten their load, which means you can't really get the fitness work into them they need to.

"I'm delighted to see him come through 90 minutes the other night, that'll do him the world of good."

Injuries have limited Saint-Maximin – who suffered a hamstring injury after scoring a stunning goal against Wolverhampton Wanderers in late August – to just 376 minutes of Premier League football out of a possible 1,350.

Newcastle United winger Allan Saint-Maximin.

Saint-Maximin had hoped to force his way into France’s World Cup squad.

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Newcastle’s first competitive game back will be a fourth-round Carabao Cup tie against Bournemouth at St James’s Park the week before Christmas.