Allan Saint-Maximin – Who is this Cardiff and West Ham target?
The French U21 international has caught the eye with some wonderful performances in the French top flight this season, registering 2 goals and 2 assists from 11 games in Ligue 1.
As the Premier League clubs plot January swoops for the youngster, let us get a deeper insight into one of the most promising talents in Ligue 1- Nice’s Allan Saint-Maximin.
Allan Saint-Maximin was born Chatenay-Malebry, a small town in the southwestern region of Paris, to Haitian parents. He played for Saint Etienne at the youth levels before signing a professional contract and made his debut for the club’s B team in 2013.
Although he was promoted to the senior team, he found regular minutes hard to come by and made only 3 appearances in Ligue 1 in the 2013-14 season. After making 9 appearances in the following season, he joined Monaco in 2015 but was immediately loaned out to German outfit Hannover 96.
The youngster made only a single appearance for Monaco in Ligue 1 and was loaned out to Bastia in the 2016-17 season before joining Nice in the summer of 2017 for a fee of 9 million.
He made 28 appearances last term for Nice in Ligue 1 and scored a couple of goals but he seems to have taken his game to a new level this season.
The 21-year-old has been a regular for France at all youth levels and currently plays at the U21 level.
Style of Play
Saint-Maximin is a right-footed winger who is capable of playing on either side of the pitch and can also operate as a wide-forward in a 4-3-3 formation.
The most impressive things about him are his lightning pace and mesmerizing dribbling skills. Blessed with a sound technique which allows him to keep good close control in tight areas along the flanks, the 21-year-old uses his pace and instant acceleration to beat the defenders.
The French youth international is also adept at cutting inside from the flanks and has the vision to find the runs of his teammates in the final third. He is a decent crosser and can create chances from the wide areas of the pitch.
Saint-Maximin averages 4.2 successful dribbles and 2.2 key passes per game this season in Ligue 1, something that speaks volumes of his raw talent as a winger.
However, he needs to improve on his work rate and defensive contribution. He is excellent when he gets on the ball but he doesn’t tend to bother the opposition with his movement off the ball.
Read More:- Who is this 10-goal Asian starlet on Man City’s radar? Should they splash £5m for his services?
What does the future hold?
Allan Saint-Maximin is among the finest young dribblers on the planet but he needs to work on the other aspects of his game. Given that he has made a name for himself in Ligue 1, a move to the Premier League might help him excel in the developmental stage of his career.
Nevertheless, he is a promising young talent and has the potential to achieve success in the Premier League provided he continues his development in the right direction.