Newcastle United forward Allan Saint-Maximin is one of the best dribblers in the Premier League right now, as his incredible skill set, quick feet, unpredictability in front of defenders and a rapid burst of pace makes him a very difficult customer to defend against on his day.
Ever since his arrival at Tyneside last summer, he has got the crowd on the edge of their seats whenever he has the ball: lifting the atmosphere of excitement and anticipation at the famous St James’ Park.
When the dreadlocked Frenchman is on top of his game, it is a nightmare to be on the opposing side and having to defend against him: although it doesn’t look like he spares his Newcastle teammates either, while going up against them in training sessions.
Saint-Maximin has been spotted scoring an outstanding solo goal in Newcastle training recently, as he started and ended a brilliant mazy run through the opponent’s half to find the back of the net.
The forward got the ball in the middle third and immediately took on his marker who couldn’t get near him: and switched gears with ease as he ran past multiple defenders who might as well have not been there, and buried the finish with expertise.
It was an absolutely glorious solo effort enough to make anybody’s jaw drop, but yet so typical of the man involved.
Deixou a marcação pra trás e meteu um golaço!— Esporte Interativo (de
Crédito: st_maximin e nufc/Instagram pic.twitter.com/4jIYOIm4Ml
) (@Esp_Interativo) October 8, 2020
Saint-Maximin is any gambler’s safe bet to win a take-on against most defenders in the Premier League, as his lower body strength and low centre of gravity makes him the overwhelming favourite for any time he wishes to take on a defender in a direct duel.
He is a brilliant ball progressor as well: Opta stats from last season show that in the category of players with the most yards gained while dribbling the ball, Saint-Maximin tops the list with an average of 12.17 metres from a total of 125 carries – over 1m more than his nearest rival, Marcus Rashford who has 11.09m.
Although there is room for improvement for the Frenchman in terms of his end product, he is quite the showman: sensational with the ball at his feet and provides Steve Bruce’s side with an extra dimension with his explosiveness.
He can well be frustrating at times if his tricks don’t come off, but like all showmen, he lifts the crowd up like no other, and is a customer one would want on their side any day, rather than as an opponent.