After suffering a disappointing 2-0 defeat away at Southampton just before the start of the international break, Newcastle will be itching to put things right when they take on Chelsea this Saturday.
The Magpies currently lie in 13th place in the Premier League, and face a Chelsea side whose uptick in form has seen them move just three points behind league leaders Leicester.
And whilst the chances of the Tyneside club picking up a result may be slim, they have been handed a major potential boost ahead of the clash at St James’ Park.
After limping off in England’s UEFA Nations League defeat to Belgium on Sunday, there is a huge concern over whether Ben Chilwell will be fit enough to play for Chelsea on Saturday lunch-time.
The Blues’ summer signing has been in fine form over the past few weeks at club level, bagging two goals and two assists in his last five Premier League games.
If he does miss out, then Chelsea will be without one of their first names on the team-sheet, and give Frank Lampard a major headache.
It could leave him having to use regular centre-back Cesar Azpilicueta out of position, or turn back to Marcos Alonso, whose last game in a Blues shirt was his horror showing in a 3-3 draw away to newly-promoted West Brom – a match in which he was hauled off at half-time when his team were trailing 3-0.
Either way, Allan Saint-Maximin will surely be licking his lips at the prospect of going up against one of the two. Newcastle’s wing wizard has yet to really spark into life this season aside from the game against Burnley, in which he picked up his only goal and assist of the season.
Described as looking “lazy” by Alan Shearer earlier this year, Saturday could give Saint-Maximin the perfect opportunity to find his form and run riot against either an out-of-position centre-back, or a slow and defensively suspect left-back.
The Magpies’ star winger will fancy his chances.
The post Newcastle handed boost ahead of Chelsea clash, Saint-Maximin could run riot first appeared on soccerFanCast.com.