Ahead of Newcastle’s Friday night clash with Crystal Palace, the main talking point amongst the fanbase has been about one Allan Saint-Maximin.
The Magpies’ French talisman hasn’t been at the races at all this season, scoring just once in the Premier League so far this campaign, while his assists have dried up as well.
The Daily Mail report that before the 23-year-old picked up an injury, he was in line to be dropped by Steve Bruce in any case, which just underlines how poor he has been this term.
The article states that the feeling inside the club is that Saint-Maximin’s performance levels have dropped since he signed his new six-year deal this summer.
If Saint-Maximin has indeed downed tools, that is incredibly unprofessional and worrying, but can you really blame him?
The next six years of his career are secured on big money, and the wheels are seemingly falling off at Newcastle under Bruce, with Saint-Maximin reportedly one of the trio of players reportedly unhappy with the club’s current predicament.
With all that in mind, it’s understandable that Saint-Maximin isn’t as motivated as you would expect him to be.
Unfortunately, this all harks back to the fact that Newcastle gave him a six-year contract this summer, as people within the club believe that his performances noticeably dropped after he signed the new deal.
The thing is that Newcastle, above any other club, should know the dangers of handing out ridiculously long contracts.
The Magpies famously handed Alan Pardew and Graham Carr eight-year deals back in 2012, and that was a decision they regretted almost immediately.
Of course, Saint-Maximin is a different kettle of fish to Pardew, in that he’s actually good at what he does, but Mike Ashley knew the perils of handing out these bumper long-term deals and what that can do to an employee’s mentality, especially in a business where job security comes at a premium.
Now, it seems as though Newcastle have an unhappy player on the books, and he’s signed on for the next six years.
Hopefully, this is the last time we see Ashley hand out such a massive contract, but it wouldn’t surprise us one bit if he once again refuses to learn from his errors.