Newcastle talisman Allan Saint-Maximin remains certain in his belief that he has the level to play in the France senior national ream.
The 24-year-old is yet to make his debut for Les Bleus and Didier Deschamps has overlooked our number 10 in recent squad selections despite his devastating form at the start of the season.
Despite having two goals and three assists from 10 Premier League games, Saint-Maximin believes he can do more.
With the reigning World Cup champions having an embarrassment of attacking options to choose from, Saint-Maximin faces a tall order breaking into the team ahead of next winter’s 2022 World Cup, held in Qatar.
The former Nice man has represented his country at under-21 level, but he is yet to make that jump up to the senior national side.
The mercurial winger is going to be crucial in our survival bid and with the club embarking on a new era, Saint-Maximin has the opportunity to show Deschamps he deserves a place in his squad.
Speaking in an interview with BFM RMC Sport, Saint-Maximin had no doubt that he has the quality to play alongside the likes of Paul Pogba, Kylian Mbappe and Karim Benzema.
When asked does he think he has the level for the French team, Saint-Maximin said: “That is a certainty. I think I have the level. There are good players but as we can see, many of them have had the chance to be called. And I think I have the level to be called up to the French team.”
With every passing squad selection that Saint-Maximin misses out on, he would be forgiven for feeling disillusioned. But instead he acknowledges that he can still make improvements to his game.
Saint-Maximin added: “If I am not called, it is necessarily because I am missing something. I think I still have to work, because there is quality, whether we are talking about Mbappé, Dembélé, Griezmann, Benzema, a top-level team.
“There is still a long way to go, but I know I am approaching it. I will try to make the choice of the coach more and more complicated, that’s the only thing I can do.”
With the World Cup on the horizon, Saint-Maximin believes he could prove to be the difference for France and help unlock Mbappe and Benzema.
The Frenchman continued: “In very close games, with my quality of dribbling, speed, vision of the game, I know that I could free up a lot of space for players like Kylian, Benzema and so on.”
Newcastle rise crucial to France chances
Saint-Maximin doesn’t know whether his France fortunes are going to change and felt that only Deschamps truly knows whether he is on the cusp of the squad or not.
But with Newcastle’s new found wealth, hope and aspirations, Saint-Maximin knows that as the Magpies juggernaut builds momentum, as will his pedigree in European football.
Saint-Maximin concluded: “I will put all the chances on my side to be called up and I will continue to work, because there is the World Cup.
“I know very well that with what will happen at Newcastle in the coming months and years, I will be more and more in a good position to join the French team.
“But it goes through work and if I’m not called yet, it’s because I have to work more. So I’m going to keep working.”