Everton are interested in signing Newcastle forward Allan Saint-Maximin, as reported by The Mirror.
What’s the latest transfer news involving Saint-Maximin?
Former Toffees boss Carlo Ancelotti reportedly wants Richarlison to join him at Real Madrid this summer.
It has been claimed that if Richarlison does move to La Liga, Rafael Benitez will look to replace him with Saint-Maximin, who has been directly involved in 15 top-flight goals for Newcastle over the last two seasons.
Has Benitez always been a fan of Saint-Maximin?
Back in 2019, when Benitez was still managing Newcastle, he was not keen on bringing Saint-Maximin over to Tyneside from Ligue 1 side Nice, according to football correspondent Luke Edwards.
Later that summer, Benitez left Newcastle after failing to agree a new contract with the club, and Saint-Maximin did arrive at the Premier League side to play under Steve Bruce.
Now, two years on, Benitez appears to have changed his mind on Saint-Maximin, and wants to work with him at Goodison Park next season.
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What did Shearer say about Saint-Maximin?
Saint-Maximin returned from injury to help Newcastle win five of their final eight league games in 2020/21, and this earned him praise from club legend Alan Shearer, although the former England captain did point out that the 24-year-old must add more consistency to his game.
As quoted by the Chronicle Live, Shearer said of Saint-Maximin: “He’s fast, skilful, strong and not afraid to take other players on with the most dribbles per 90 minutes of any Newcastle player this season.
“And with that regard, he’s up there with the Premier League’s best.”
“He can pick out a pass but also has the ability to blow a game wide open with a moment of brilliance.
“The fans can see he has bags of potential and gets people out of their seats but he has to work on his end product if he’s to take his game to the next level.”
Would Saint-Maximin be a good replacement for Richarlison at Everton?
There can be no doubting that Saint-Maximin is a very exciting player to watch when in full flow. However, there may be one concern for Everton as they weigh up making a move for the Frenchman – his injury history.
In his two seasons in England, Saint-Maximin has missed 25 league matches – that’s 33% of Newcastle’s games. By comparison, Richarlison has failed to appear in just six league fixtures during this period.
The pair are the same age and appear to have a similar ability level, but Saint-Maximin’s tendency to struggle to remain in peak condition could leave Everton pondering over whether he actually would be a good alternative option to Richarlison if the Brazilian moves on in the coming weeks.