Paul Gilder of the Newcastle Journal has a fascinating interview this morning with Habib Beye.
The Senegalese international full-back, who Newcastle signed from Marseilles on the last day of the transfer window in August, talked to Paul in his ever improving English. But one thing that was not good to hear is that Habib and his family are still living in a hotel, which is not good.
For those of you who have had to put up with this in the past, it’s just very difficult, and the sooner Habib buys the house he wants in the Newcastle area, and moves in, the better for all concerned..
Habib Beye – still living in hotel room with his wife and daughter
Habib is still in the process of fully settling in at Newcastle, and is still living in a hotel with his wife and 21 month old daughter, which must be stressful for the family. But Habib likes it so much at Newcastle, he is looking to buy a house rather than rent one. But up to this point Habib has not found the house he wants to buy.
Paul met with Habib in Eldon Square one morning last week for this long interview. This is what Habib had to say:
â€œI like Newcastle and I like the (surrounding) area, Iâ€™ve settled in quite well â€œI havenâ€™t found a house yet, so Iâ€™m still in the hotel with my family and thatâ€™s not very good.”
“The sun could do with coming out a little more â€“ but that is it as far as downsides are concerned. The people are nice here, everyone has been good to me.â€
â€œYou can guarantee the sun shines for 10 months in a year there,â€ â€œIt was different there,â€ â€œIf you tried to walk around the town in Marseille, the fans would mob you and that made life difficult. It doesnâ€™t happen here.”
“The people are friendlier â€“ the people are always saying â€˜good luckâ€™ or â€˜well doneâ€™ and Iâ€™ve enjoyed getting out and about.â€
â€œWhere have I been? We might go out in the car and drive to Ponteland or Darras Hall â€“ the countryside is nice there â€“ I like looking around Newcastle, Iâ€™ve spent some time in Eldon Square, and weâ€™ve been to the Metro Centre.”
“I just like exploring the area with my wife and daughter whenever Iâ€™m not at the training ground. Iâ€™ve liked what Iâ€™ve seen so far, but I havenâ€™t been out to the beach as yet.â€
After living in Marseilles his family probably notices a big difference in one aspect of life in Newcastle. We think itâ€™s fair to assume the weather in Newcastle is not quite as good as in Marseilles but hey â€“ the people are much warmer â€“ so that must be a help 😀
Beye does not like the Newcastle weather, but continued about something that is really warm for him, his beautiful daughter Aliya:
â€œIt is so important to have her here with me all the time,â€ â€œSheâ€™s living in the hotel with us and thatâ€™s difficult because thereâ€™s not much room. No matter where she turns, thereâ€™s a wall. Weâ€™ve not found a house yet, I hope we will do that in a week or two. But Iâ€™m not going to rent somewhere.”
“Iâ€™m interested in buying because I want to settle down here. Iâ€™m not sure what will happen in the future, but I signed a three-year contract here and, if I was to rent a house for all that time, I would lose a lot of money.â€
â€œIf we can find a house, it will help us to settle even more in the area. Sam Allardyce is a good manager because he takes an interest in things like that. He has been asking whether Iâ€™ve found a house yet and asking whether I need anything else to help me settle. A little bit more sun would be nice. But Iâ€™m glad I came here and Iâ€™m pleased about the decision I made.â€
It was in Paris, Beyeâ€™s birthplace, where his career began not surprisingly. Habib continued about early life at PSG:
â€œI was at Paris-Saint Germain with Didier Domiâ€
â€œI was younger when I played with Didier, I was an 18-year-old, and I havenâ€™t spoken to him for a while. Iâ€™ve never spoken about his time here, but Newcastle is well known as a club in France because people like Didier, Laurent Robert and David Ginola have been here over the years.â€
Beyeâ€™s English is improving quickly and apparently Big Sam wants everyone speaking English to each other as their first language. We guess that’s not that surprising. His conversational skills impress his interviewers, but also the ease with which he has slotted into Newcastleâ€™s team at right back. Right back was always a problem position for Newcastle over the last few seasons – but not now. Beye went on:
â€œThe manager wants us all to speak English to each other and that has to be a good thing, itâ€™s is the language of the team and the country and itâ€™s important for me to learn,â€
â€œIâ€™ve played alongside Abdoulaye Faye for Senegal so we can speak French together, Claudio CaÃ§apa played in France for a long time, and Geremi is our guru â€“ he can speak several languages and can explain things to us when we donâ€™t understand.â€
Habib wanted to p[lay in the premiership because he always though his play would suit the physical nature of play in England and certainly his first few games for Newcastle suggest that is very true.
â€œIâ€™ve not had to change anything,â€ â€œThe Premier Leagueâ€™s a lot different to the French league, itâ€™s quick and strong and I have to be at my best all the time â€“ but I think it suits me. “
“I like the football here and Iâ€™m enjoying the pressure and the expectation that comes when youâ€™re at a big club. Iâ€™m used to that having played at Marseille and itâ€™s incredible here to have 52,000 fans behind you.â€
â€œIt has been a good start, but weâ€™re not finished yet. Itâ€™s important to build on what weâ€™ve done so far and we must keep working hard. Itâ€™s important a club like this finishes the season in the top five.”
“Iâ€™m determined to make sure that happens. Thatâ€™s the reason I came here.â€
As far as Habibâ€™s name is pronounced, he said it should be pronounced Bay â€“ as in Whitley Bay â€“ not like â€œbuyâ€ which a lot of us have been calling him. So it rhymes with Faye, who was also acquired in the last few hours before the transfer window ran out on Friday August 31st last.
Habib looks a great player for Newcastle and is one link in a new defense which threatens to batten down the hatches in Newcastleâ€˜s defense â€“ something we havenâ€™t done for a long time – maybe even 10 years â€“ at the very least.
Today at Reading is a good time to start and hopefully we will be able to get our 3rd clean sheet in the league in our first 10 games, but we’ll know whether we’ve done that in a short 6 hours from now. We certainly hope so.
Comments very welcome.