Emre has talked today to the Newcastle Journal and heâ€™s really happy to have Kevin Keegan as his new manager, and says all the players at the club believe in Kevin Keegan.
Emre – Keegan has had huge impact
Emre said today:
â€œI was becoming frustrated this season because, although Sam Allardyce said nice things about me, I wasnâ€™t playing,â€ â€œI wasnâ€™t playing regularly and I couldnâ€™t show my best when I was playing one game and then going back on the bench.”
“I was happy with Sam sometimes, I believe heâ€™s a good man, but I need to play more to find the consistency he wanted. I hardly played in three months.â€â€œHe had other options in midfield and he preferred to pick them.”
“I accepted it because I was a professional, but it was hard. I never wanted to leave Newcastle because Iâ€™m happy, I like the people here, I just wanted to play more.â€
â€œI worked very hard for my shirt and I wanted to be on the pitch every game. Maybe my style of football did not suit the old manager as much, he had other choices. I think that will change now.â€
Emre went on to talk about the first time he met with Keegan on that Thursday morning, January 17th, following his sending off the night before in Newcastleâ€™s 4-1 demolition of Stoke City. He was asked that morning what he thought of Kevin as the new manager, by Sky Sports, when he arrived in his car at the Benton training facilities. While he was still in his car, he leaned over and said “He’s a legend, and known all over the world”.
We always thought that augured well for the future – and it was a good answer. 😀
â€œIâ€™m very happy with the new manager and the dressing room is very happy. Everybody believes in Kevin Keegan and we look forward to playing for him. We know he is a big legend for everyone in English football, but especially in Newcastle.â€
â€œThe first time I saw his face I could understand everything people said about him. The first time I talked to him, I knew he was a manager I would like playing for. Heâ€™s spoken with every player and he has given us all belief, but we need to start winning games again to show that.â€
â€œIâ€™ve played for five years at Galatasaray and for five years at Inter Milan, and I know what sort of atmosphere there is in the dressing room. Everyone is laughing and smiling again at Newcastle.â€
â€œThe players have to believe in the manager and they do believe in Kevin Keegan. If you believe in the manager you can do your best, that is certainly how it is with me. We believe he is a really honest man and I think everything will be okay for Kevin Keegan and Newcastle United.â€
â€œWhen I feel confident I can show my best. Kevin Keegan came to see me play for Inter Milan when he was at Manchester City and he has told me this. I know he wanted me then and thatâ€™s important for me. That was four years ago, but we are together now.
â€œI have to show him my quality, but I know he believes in me and thatâ€™s important. The manager believes in all the players and we have to justify that now. That is the challenge for us.â€
Emre’s right that the challenge indeed is for the players to show Kevin what they can do and Sunday’s match will be a good time for us to see how things are going.
Kevin’s now got almost the whole squad to choose from except Geremi and Martins, who are still away on African Cup of Nations duty with their countries Cameroon and Nigeria respectively, who have both reached the quarter-finals.
Our powerful Senegal players, Faye and Beye, are now back on Tyne-side, and hopefully will be available for selection. Even Mark Viduka looks like he’s available for tomorrow, which is good news. Peter Ramage is still recovering from his ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) knee injury, but we hope he can play a few games before the end of the season.
Peter’s Newcastle contract runs out in June, so that’s a decision Kevin will need to make on Peter’s future at the club, shortly.
Comments very welcome.