Eddie Howe has revealed that he is “hoping” to have Allan Saint-Maximin back for Saturday’s clash with Brighton at St James’ Park.
The Frenchman has been missing from the squad in each of our last two games and it seems he wasn’t even close to making our win at Brentford over the weekend, with the NUFC boss admitting he was “some way short” in the end.
However, Howe has confirmed that he’ll be “a lot closer” for our upcoming game against an out of form Seagulls side, as he’s expected back in training this week following a spell in France for treatment.
Here’s what he’s had to say when speaking to the press, saying everyone is keeping their fingers crossed that the 24-year-old will be back in action this weekend:
“He was some way short.
“We hoped Allan would make it, but he was some way short in the end.
“We’re now keeping our fingers crossed, and hoping we can get him ready for next week.
“I think he’ll be a lot closer for that [Brighton] game.
“He’s a massive player for us, and we’re very aware that we need him back, but it’s very good to see the team able to cope.
“If you see the players that are missing, there are some really outstanding individuals, but the team’s being strong enough at the moment.”
“That is a good sign for the future.
“I will take selection dilemmas and tough calls over not having enough strength.
“So Allan coming back in, potentially, would be positive for the team, as would any of the players, if we can get them back.
“The squad is in a good place, feeling confident, the environment is strong but we are going into an intense period of games and we will need the whole squad to pay their part.”
As Eddie says, it’s a massive positive that the squad have coped so well in his absence – picking up four points from games at West Ham and Brentford – however it would be a huge boost to have our most talented player back on Saturday.
Let’s hope he’s back in training ASAP and available this weekend.