Newcastle United boss Eddie Howe has, on Thursday, spoken out over the ongoing speculation linking Allan Saint-Maximin with an exit from the club.
Recent weeks have seen French wide-man Saint-Maximin see his once talismanic status at St. James' Park called into question.
This comes amid regular backlash on the part of the Magpies faithful, for what has been widely singled out as a lack of commitment on the part of their explosive attacker.
Saint-Maximin, in turn, was dropped to the bench for a trio of successive Premier League outings early last month, further fuelling suggestions that those in a position of power on Tyneside could look to move the 25-year-old on in the summer, amid the ongoing rebuild of the club's playing squad.
It therefore came as little surprise when the subject of ASM's future was put to his manager earlier today.
Speaking in a press conference ahead of his side's showdown with Wolves on Friday night, Eddie Howe was drawn on the possibility of parting with his star winger ahead of next season, amid rumoured interest on the part of Premier League rivals Aston Villa.
Howe, though, was quick to shut down any such suggestions at the source.
After assuring that he has 'really enjoyed working' with Saint-Maximin, Newcastle's boss assured that the Frenchman 'has a long-term future at the club':
Saint-Maximin, fresh off the back of his boss' comments, will of course be hopeful of featuring from the off in 24 hours' time, when Newcastle turn their attentions back towards efforts to maintain their top-flight status for another season.
A meeting with Bruno Lage's Wolves lies in store at St. James' Park, with the Magpies set to head into proceedings desperate for a return to winning ways on the back of a trio of successive defeats.
As things stand, Howe and co. sit seven points clear of the relegation zone, albeit whilst having played a game more than 18th-placed Burnley.
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