What’s the story?
After seeing both attackers forced off against Wolves last night, Edwards summised on Twitter that Newcastle would in fact be relegated if they were unable to play for the foreseeable future.
I’ll say this now, if Almiron and Saint-Maximin are both long term injuries alongside Wilson #nufc are going to be relegated. As for this game, not sure it’s a good point or two dropped. Had chances to win easily. Again https://t.co/5XRYy26cnh
— Luke Edwards (@LukeEdwardsTele) February 27, 2021
Is he right?
It’s certainly hard to argue with that assumption, even if it is bleak.
With top scorer Callum Wilson out until April too, losing second-top scorer Almiron and the wonderfully talented Saint-Maximin would seriously deplete a frontline who are barely the most prolific as it is. Indeed, the former has been in excellent form of late, scoring twice in the dramatic win over Southampton and earning praise from the likes of Chris Waugh of The Athletic for his work-rate in what was then a new-look Newcastle side following Graeme Jones’ arrival.
Without Saint-Maximin, the team have always struggled. In fact, they have won only three times in the twenty-one games he’s missed since joining the club back in the summer of 2019.
Wilson, Almiron and Saint-Maxminin are the three highest scorers in a team not blessed with firepower so the thought of going for an extended period of time with none of them in the side is a hugely worrying one.
Of course, Newcastle can point to bad luck here but, in truth, they should never have been in this position anyway.
While the COVID-19 pandemic may be having an impact on the number of injuries, Mark Douglas of The Chronicle did recently point out that the club did have a chance to address their worrying slump in form over the course of the January window but, ultimately, chose not to.
If their three biggest goal threats are taken from them now, it’s hard to see any of them sticking around next season should the team be relegated.