Eddie Howe has revealed how excited he is to be working with Allan Saint-Maximin following his arrival at Newcastle United.
Speaking to Sky Sports, he’s revealed that the 24-year-old responded “excellently” to his first two days at the club – which saw our new head coach put the players through their paces on the training ground, not hand out days off.
Howe has also spoken about the challenge he’ll face to get the best out the “unique” Frenchman, discussing the importance of us setting up in a way that allows him to shine, while ensuring he “contributes to the team” himself.
Here’s what he had to say when asked about our star man:
“Really, really pleased to be working with Maxi.
“I think he is a very, very unique talent.
“Game winner, match winner, a real difference maker for us.
“First and foremost, we have to find a way to function as a team, to get the best out of him.
“But he has to also contribute to the team, the two things go hand in hand.
“So, really excited to try and figure out ways to get him to play at his best levels.
“His response in the two days has been excellent.”
Firstly, that last line is an encouraging one, as some on social media have wondered if the Frenchman would struggle with the sort of high-intensity training sessions Howe has thrown in from the off.
He is our match winner and most talented players, but he also needs to work harder for the team – so talk of him responding excellently on the training ground is a great early sign.
Let’s hope Howe can get the best out of him, not only finding a position and formation that allows him to thrive, but improving his fitness and all round ability to perform at a consistent level – both on and off the ball.