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News and Commentary On Newcastle United Football Club By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

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Ferdinand – One of Biggest Derby Games In The World

10:56 am, Tuesday, April 15th, 2008 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 35 Comments

Les Ferdinand remembers well the derby games between Newcastle and Sunderland, when he was at the club from 1995 through 1997.

les-ferdinand-23.jpg

Les Ferdinand - 50 goals in 84 appearances for the Magpies

Les scored 50 goals in 84 appearances for Newcastle, and he is now in broadcasting, and doing a good job in the broadcast booth. And of course he loves Newcastle and is loved by Newcastle fans everywhere for his great contribution to the club. As we’ve said before Les is also a gentleman and a wonderful role model for kids.

Les talked about the Newcastle Sunderland derby games:

“I was lucky enough to do well when I played against Sunderland, and that was no mean feat because they had a good team that was challenging with us at the top of the table at the time. But I was unfortunate at the same time because I never got to play in that atmosphere that everyone was always raving about.”

“The fans are famous for their passion in the area and to play in a stadium where both sets of supporters were roaring their teams on would have been something else. But because of the ban on away fans at Roker Park when I was playing, I never got to do that.”

“Newcastle did the same for the return leg and I think it took a bit away from the games to be honest. If you’re any kind of player you feed off an atmosphere like that.”

“But make no mistake, the derby game is absolutely huge. As a player you appreciate how big it is and you know you have to perform. In my day the build-up around the city reached fever pitch by the time the game kicked off and you knew you were playing for the pride of a hell of a lot of people when you went out there.”

Having also turned out for Tottenham in the North London derby against Arsenal, and also Besiktas in their local derby with Fenerbahçe, Ferdinand is in a good position to judge where the Tyne-Wear game ranks in the list of football’s biggest local rivalries.

Les continued:

“It’s one of the biggest derby games in the world,” “I played in a few but the supporters in the North East are the most passionate and football-mad I ever played in front of and the derby is up there with the best of them.”

“I used to have people come up to me in the street months before the game and say ‘Just beat Sunderland’ – it’s that kind of game really. The North London game was big but it probably wasn’t the same kind of focus that you have up there.”

“The game itself is going to be very close because Sunderland are a decent side under Roy Keane, who’s done a good job,” “There were probably a few people asking questions about whether Roy would be able to do it as a manager because he’d been such a good player and it is sometimes difficult to replicate that.”

“ But he’s completely re-invented himself and he’s been a big success so far.”

We also think Keane’s done a good job at Sunderland, and it looks like he will keep them in the Premier league this season. They are now 7 points clear of the relegation zone, and 3 points behind Newcastle. But they shouldn’t expect anything out of the game at St. James’ Park on Sunday, and a Newcastle win is vital to our season.

No less than all 3 points will be acceptable to the Newcastle faithful on Sunday, and the players know that, and we think they will deliver.

Comments welcome.



Tags: Newcastle News



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35 responses so far ↓

  • 1 tdt // Apr 15, 2008 at 11:19 AM

    good words from the man :)

  • 2 HeronMag // Apr 15, 2008 at 11:42 AM

    Ferdinand was an absolute hero when he was here. When Keegan was forced to sell the big man after the Shearer purchase it was the beginning of the end for the glory days and in my opinion one of the reasons KK walked.

    We could always use another striker like him at the club.

  • 3 AZ // Apr 15, 2008 at 11:45 AM

    SIR LES IS A LEGEND!!!!!

  • 4 klaher // Apr 15, 2008 at 11:48 AM

    Em, it was actually Dalglish who sold Ferdinand. Well, more like Freddie Shepherd. But Ferdinand was there when Keegan quit.

  • 5 shearer4pm // Apr 15, 2008 at 11:50 AM

    11 top derbys no particular order

    1 roma v lazio
    2 man u v liverpool
    3 barca v real
    4 inter v milan
    5 torino v juve
    6 newcastle v sunderland
    7 fenerbache v galatasery
    8 arsenal v spurs
    9 bayern munich v borrusia dortmund
    10 river plate v boba juniors
    11 rangers v celtic

    would love to go too all of these i here number 7 is very special and number 1 is very dangerous lol but i here number 6 is the bbiggest and most special ;) and number 2 is jus rubbish :P number 3 has just gota be done tho

    whats your favourite??/

  • 6 Cyprus Mag // Apr 15, 2008 at 11:58 AM

    Shearerteatime.
    No celtic rangers?

  • 7 shearer4pm // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:01 PM

    yeh number 11 :D:D:D

    jus added it in cheers lol

  • 8 Davies // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:04 PM

    When did Man Utd vs Liverpool become a derby? Surely you mean Everton vs Liverpool. Wakey wakey Shearer4pm.

  • 9 shearer4pm // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:06 PM

    yeh alright alright its early lol

    i shall edit it now

  • 10 Bill F // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:06 PM

    Or ManU v ManC

  • 11 shearer4pm // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:09 PM

    yeh it wont let me edit it again :S

    11 top derbys no particular order

    1 roma v lazio
    2 everton v liverpool
    3 barca v real
    4 inter v milan
    5 torino v juve
    6 newcastle v sunderland
    7 fenerbache v galatasery
    8 arsenal v spurs
    9 bayern munich v borrusia dortmund
    10 river plate v boca juniors
    11 rangers v celtic
    12 man u v man city

    would love to go too all of these i here number 7 is very special and number 1 is very dangerous lol but i here number 6 is the bbiggest and most special ;) and number 2 is jus rubbish :P number 3 has just gota be done tho

    whats your favourite??/

  • 12 Steve D // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:09 PM

    Les is like a light in a dark tunnel when watching the Hell-spawn that is Setanta.

  • 13 Bill F // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:16 PM

    As someone commented earlier in year before the last Mackem, Toon game. No other derby has the same history as ours, the feelings go way back to the English Civil War when we supported opposite sides.
    The other derbies are raised handbags compared to that.

  • 14 Stello // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:19 PM

    shearer4pm you have 1 big mistake in here.Point 9 is incorrect.The biggest derby is dortmund and shalke 04.This is one zone with 10 cities and you never know in which city you are.And they really hate each other

  • 15 51times // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:25 PM

    How is Roma/Lazio first?

    Also, the Old Firm at 11? Do you have any understanding of the meaning behind that derby?

  • 16 Callum // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:31 PM

    He said in no particular order..

  • 17 c // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:31 PM

    wasnt it Dalglish that sold Les ? but def the toon started slipping from the day he went

  • 18 51times // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:32 PM

    Then why number them at all, tosser?

  • 19 JP from The Rock of Gibraltar // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:37 PM

    Barca v Real Madrid IS THE BIGGEST DERBY but Newcastle v Sunderland has to come in second!! Incredibly passionate supporters from all four clubs. I live right next to Spain so I am tired of hearing all the rivalry all year round.

  • 20 Jimmie // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:39 PM

    Cant belive Kenny Daglish sold Sir Les to Tottenham and replaced him with Andreas Andersson…. shame on him!

  • 21 playzoginthemiddle // Apr 15, 2008 at 12:42 PM

    I always thought that a derby involved two teams that play near each other. In which case there is no way on Earth that Barcelona v Real Madrid is a derby. Try Barcelona v Espanol or Real v Atletico.

  • 22 Spyro // Apr 15, 2008 at 1:16 PM

    seems like Boussoufa wants to come

    http://www.premiershiplatest.com/news/anderlecht-s-boussoufa-open-newcastle-in-559746.html

  • 23 Nobby's dad // Apr 15, 2008 at 1:59 PM

    HeronMag …as it’s been pointed out Sir Les was sold by Dalglish. The deal was arranged a couple of days before Shearer did his ankle in pre-season and was out for about 8 months. We tried then to keep Les, but being a gent he said he’d given Spurs his word that he’d sign for them.

    Mind in Dalglish’s defence there is no doubt Shephard made his sell Les as he was 30 and Spurs offered £6 million.

  • 24 Leo // Apr 15, 2008 at 2:52 PM

    yeah 6mil them days was an aweful lot

  • 25 shearer4pm // Apr 15, 2008 at 3:12 PM

    51 times,

    i numbered them so i could make references to them underneath u prik

    and roma lazio is prob 1 of the top 2-3 derbys in the world, people die when that match happens, dont disrespect what u obviously no nuthing about yeh

    playzoginthemiddle,

    and i neva said local derbys thats y i originally put man u v liverpool cus it is a derby jus not local

  • 26 staffsmag // Apr 15, 2008 at 3:20 PM

    SteveD – spot on about setanta – is me or do they just have 2 cameras at every game ? lol nowt like sky coverage. Sir Les – Legend !!!!! enough said!

  • 27 HeronMag // Apr 15, 2008 at 3:23 PM

    Nobby’s Dad – I stand corrected.

    Forgot about that. That’s when we thought Jon Dahl Tomasson was going to be talented after he scored a couple pre-season wasn’t it!

  • 28 Steve // Apr 15, 2008 at 4:04 PM

    HeronMag. I am afraid KK didnt sell Sir Les, it was Dalgleish. Sir Les is one of the best strikers I have ever seen in a black and white shirt as well as being one of the most popular

  • 29 Steve // Apr 15, 2008 at 4:08 PM

    Aplogies HeronMag, just seen other postings re Dalgleish selling Sir Les

  • 30 Steve // Apr 15, 2008 at 4:10 PM

    Heard that advanced talks have taken place to bring Henry and Scholes to SJP. Dont think either will happen but this has come from an ex player who still is well connected at the club. Break the bank for Berbetov and 2 quality centre halves I say

  • 31 shearer4pm // Apr 15, 2008 at 4:14 PM

    steve

    scholes would be amazin gud player and may be findin his chances limited although i c him as a one club man personaly
    wud be gud tho

    although have we got a name for this ex player??

  • 32 dopaz // Apr 15, 2008 at 5:35 PM

    barca v real is not a derby, its barca v espanyol and real madrid v atletico madrid

  • 33 shearer4pm // Apr 15, 2008 at 6:35 PM

    barca real is a derby

    not a local derby, still a derby
    doesnt have to be local to be a derby or russia wud have none loool:P

  • 34 Bill F // Apr 15, 2008 at 8:49 PM

    The dictionary defines a derby as

    A sporting contest of importance especially if it has local interest.

    So it doesn’t have to be two local teams although it usually is.

  • 35 hanzemre // Apr 15, 2008 at 9:18 PM

    win this derby & we can go for a holiday soon after & be back early for a promising next season. woohooo




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