Journalist Ross Gregory has aired his concern that while Bruno Guimaraes and Allan Saint-Maximin will be back in contention soon, Newcastle United manager Eddie Howe should not rush the duo back.
After a very promising start to the 2022/23 Premier League season, the Magpies were recently on the end of a difficult result at the weekend where they had a goal wrongfully disallowed which would have won them all three points.
A big reason that could have also attributed to the goalless draw against Crystal Palace is the fact they were without their star duo of Guimaraes and Saint-Maximin, which left them without two of their most influential players.
Both have been out due to injuries and are set to return to the squad shortly. However, while the club will be aching to get them back on the pitch, Gregory believes Howe should not rush them in order to avoid aggravating their injuries.
He told NUFC Matters: “I think they’ll be close. I think the both of them are going to be pretty close. You’d hope that they’ll both be fit, if not for that game, then shortly after, but when you listen to Eddie Howe, when you listen to the noises coming out of the club as well, neither injury was really particularly severe, but you’ve just got to be careful with the recuperation, with the rehab.
“You don’t want to turn something that’s a two or three-week injury into a six or seven-week injury and all of a sudden, you’re out long-term because you’ve rushed it back when they’re not quite ready. I’d rather that they err on the side of caution if there is any doubt with either player.”
TIF Thoughts on Gregory’s comments…
The Magpies need a huge bounce-back win against West Ham United at the weekend to make up for their loss of points to Crystal Palace, but it could be an egregious mistake from Howe to rush back both Guimaraes and Saint-Maximin if they are not fully fit and ready.
The French forward has picked up one goal and two assists in his first four games, while Guimaraes is currently ranking in the 93rd percentile for progressive carries, in 91st for pressures and in 90th for shot-creating actions (as per FBref).
Luckily for the Tyneside club, West Ham have also not been in the best form and have a plethora of injuries themselves. Therefore, we think Howe should risk resting both if they are not fully fit, or they could face even longer without them, which will only hurt their season in the long term.
Should ASM and Guimaraes play this weekend?