Allan Saint-Maximin was brought off injured within just fifteen minutes of Newcastle’s clash with Spurs this afternoon, and Toon fans are furious at the decision to start him.
ASM was a doubt for the match earlier in the week, having only just recovered from a hamstring strain.
The Frenchman only returned to regular training on Monday, and his explosive game style meant rushing him back into action would be a potential risk.
But it was a risk Steve Bruce was willing to take.
A surprise to everyone, ASM started the match in left midfield, but it wasn’t long before Bruce’s gamble fell apart.
Chasing a long ball up the wing from Matt Ritchie, Saint-Maximin bizarrely pulled up and it soon became clear the winger had aggravated his hamstring once again.
The Frenchman eventually gave up any attempts to continue and was then brought off promptly for Christian Atsu.
Naturally, this turn of events has baffled Toon fans.
The dynamism and skill of ASM is certainly something NUFC have missed in the last few weeks, but if the winger still wasn’t near 100% fitness, he simply shouldn’t have played.
It’s uncertain how much further a set-back this will prove for ASM, and Toon fans are furious at Bruce’s decision.
Toon fans react to ASM injury
Terrible management by Bruce to rush Saint Maximin back today. Should have given him til Leicester at the earliest & will now likely miss 4 games or so. Pathetic. #nufc
— Mark Gillon (@mgillon81) August 25, 2019
#NUFC so ASM obviously wasn’t fit……absolute bloody shambolic!
— Harry Keogh (@HarryKeogh5) August 25, 2019
Ridiculous idea starting ASM when he has only just came back #nufc
— shaun (@ShaunIrving_) August 25, 2019
Who’s idea was to risk him in this game? Seriously, what are the chances of us getting anything out of this and you play him? #nufc
— Jack (@Jack__1955) August 25, 2019
Starting ASM was an act of desperation by a manager who knows he is well out of his depth #NUFC
— NUFC Index (@NUFC_Index) August 25, 2019
I know it’s easy to pin everything on the coach but seriously though, ASM hasn’t had much training since the previous injury. His starting place has to be a terrible call from Bruce.
— MichaelC180 (@MichaelNUFC180) August 25, 2019
And we heard people scoffing about Rafa's approach to fitness and injurys. Well ASM just proves the difference. One would have managed the injury, the other has decided to risk the player. Top vs average #nufc
— Stephen #NUFC (@EastStandBlockF) August 25, 2019
ASM. Was surprised that he was starting. Clearly wasn’t 100%.
Stupid risk for a game we can’t win #nufc
— Steve McKenna (@SteveMcKenna_) August 25, 2019