Given – Spanish Speaking Irish Goalkeeper in Newcastle

Newcastle have made a solid start to the season having taken 4 points from their first two games, and are sent to Coventry tonight, and seem to have a good chance of getting through that tie.

Shay Given – congratulating Fabriocio on his first words spoken in English

Shay Given has been back to his very best this season and he talked about the game on Saturday and how he manages to communicate with Fabricio Coloccini, who right now speaks little English.

Given said today:

“We said before the game that it was important to get the win and maintain the momentum we started last weekend against Manchester United. But is not that easy, especially against Bolton, because you know what you are going to get from them.”

“They make it very difficult for you and it was a tough scrappy game. There was not a lot in it and we have played better and lost before.” “It was a tough start playing Man U and Arsenal in the first three games so it is good to have four points on the board at this stage.”

“We have something to build on. It is a platform and we need to try to keep a run of not losing when we go down to Arsenal.”

It turns out that Given has been learning Spanish, and he speaks it quite well apparently.

And it has proven extremely useful this season following the arrival of Spanish-speaking Argentine center-back Fabricio Coloccini from Deportivo La Coruña.

The defender doesn’t speak a word of English, which is unlike his Argentine team mate Jonas Gutierrez, who speaks English well.

But Given has been impressed, like the rest of us, with the ease with which he has slotted into the team.

Shay continued:

“Jonás’ English is good, but Fabricio’s is not great. Luckily my Spanish is not too bad. I can speak a little so that helps.”“They have both settled in well and they are both tough in the tackle.”

“They are not flimsy in any way. They like to get stuck in as well and that is what the Premiership is all about sometimes.”

“Especially when you play a team like Bolton. You have to get fired into them and that is what Fabricio did. He did not shirk away from it.”

While Fabricio will not fully appreciate it, well not yet anyway, he has the unique opportunity of learning English with a Geordie accent.

So shortly, maybe when somebody says to him – you have no chance against Arsenal at the weekend – he may be able to say Gerraway, man -with only a slight Spanish accent augmenting the wonderful Geordie dialect.

Such poetry.

Comments welcome.

39 comments so far

  • Tom4Nufc

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:07 AM

    Comment #1

    Super Shay! He is just remarkable, and he can speak Spanish! So useful for keeping a tight defence 🙂

  • Ericles

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #2

    If history is right the rest of the country ought to speak Geordie with an English accent!!! Well done Shay. What part of Argentina does Coloccinni come from? You never know – if it is Patagonia he may be able to speak Welsh. Just joking. Am very impressed with our new CB. He reads the game so well without using English. Great!

  • ed speed

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:21 AM

    Comment #3



    i love this guy, puts his all into the team

  • Tom4Nufc

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #4

    Don’t we all ed speed?

    Shay Given is the true meaning of a legend!

  • fippy

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #5

    If only he spent as much time on his distribution as he does on languages

  • Toon Graeme

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:25 AM

    Comment #6

    Best keeper in the prem by far!

    I read this in the journal this morning too.

    If it helps with the defence then it can only be seen as a positive – until he learns more english.

    Think Given will be in goal tonight. Would like to see harps on the pitch too.

    Im sure who ever KK puts out will do us proud.

  • Lew Davies

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:26 AM

    Comment #7

    Ah yes ! Julio Geordio springs to mind 😀

    Funny as…

  • Lew Davies

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:28 AM

    Comment #8

    I thought you were off to the match Ed (speed)!

    or was you just bull chitting again?

  • nu-andy-fc

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:28 AM

    Comment #9

    shay is a legend and Coloccinni has fit into the back four perfectly him and taylor could build a solid partnership. All we need now is a LB and the defence will be the best we’ve had in a long time.

  • ed speed

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:30 AM

    Comment #10

    what are your oppions on donaldson?

    i quite rate him, but thats just me.



  • BigB75

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:34 AM

    Comment #11

    off- topic–Anyone know if Barton is playing with the reserves to keep match ready/fitness? becuase i think we need him in the mid field…..good player….bad person….hopefully that will change…..

  • Toon Graeme

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:38 AM

    Comment #12

    I dont know what Barton is doing. I know KK has said that he is in training. Not sure if this is just at Benton or if it is the reserves.

    Agreed BigB re bad person. But a player we need and wont be able to sell unless he is naughty and gets the boot.

    Ed Speed – what time you leaving to get to Cov mate?

  • Tom

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:39 AM

    Comment #13

    He is possibly back to being better than his previous best. I mean, when was the last time Shay saved a penalty!!!!

  • Tom4Nufc

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:39 AM

    Comment #14

    I heard Joey was training, but he just wont play till after the FA hearing.

  • ed speed

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:39 AM

    Comment #15

    in about ten minutes greame? are you getting the bus down?

    i’m driving, shouldn’t take more than 3.30 hours should it?



  • Tom4Nufc

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:41 AM

    Comment #16

    Shay is back to the best form he has been in for years all I can say is, I HATE MARLON HAREWOOD, if it wasnt for that mug of a footballer, Shay would have been on top notch form for the last 2 years… grrrr, just hearing Marlon Harewood make me cringe!

  • Toon Graeme

    Aug 26, 2008 at 11:56 AM

    Comment #17

    Ed – no I cant make this trip. Will be there in spirit and watching on the tele.

    Hope we have a good one.

    I think that sounds about right. I know some of the organised busses were leaving around 1130am – but busses take ages so in the car I think that will be ok. You have plenty of time to get there and have a pint or three.

  • Tore Torell

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:00 PM

    Comment #18

    I’d like to see Saviola sign before the weekend too, another argie at Tyneside would be nice!

    I think we can hope for 3 signings before the window closes, hopefully Saviola, Tiago and a full back.

  • Tommy

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #19

    @Ericles – And every Geordie..

    The whole country used to speak with a Geordie accent once upon a time.. I’ll spare you all the details, but it’s researchable..

  • Fergie

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:05 PM

    Comment #20

    Completely off topic, but does anyone else reckon that the joke/costume shop on Percy St. just down from the Strawberry is missing a trick by not having Spiderman masks and costumes on sale? I walked past it on saturday and saw they had a batman costume for sale, but they could be making thousands if they stock up on spidey masks! the programme sellers should buy some and flog them from their stalls too!

  • ed speed

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:05 PM

    Comment #21

    thanks greame. i will.



  • ed speed

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:07 PM

    Comment #22

    i really off now

  • tommie lewis

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:20 PM

    Comment #23

    3 and a half hours to get to Cov from Newcastle?

    Think Ed will be there a little early. I went from down here to Newcastle last season in 2 hours!
    Granted I was in a BMW and speed limits didn’t apply 😉
    But yeah, anyone else going down tonight?

  • keeganpleasecomeback

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:32 PM

    Comment #24

    which channel overseas is showing the game??im in melbourne and foxtel aint broadcasting it

  • Craigg

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:33 PM

    Comment #25

    I read somewhere that Portsmouth were under pressure to sell Kranjcar to Hamburg for £8m to balance the books, Maybe we should whack £10m-£12m down and try to get him signed.

    SWP is apparently available for £10m meaning we could sell Milner and have to pay out just £1m.

    Also Man City are on about selling Michael Ball to the Mackems for a pretty low £1m fee surely he fits the bill, Experienced good left back would compete with and not replace Enrique, Also a big pal of Owen and maybe a bargaining chip to get that new contract signed.

    And to top it off if we can try and get Saviola on loan…

  • James

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:41 PM

    Comment #26

    I know people say SWP is not worth the money considering the other positions we need to strenghten, but I would be amazed if KK doesn’t bid for him because he said he’s the best player he’s ever worked with.

    Personally I’d bid £17 million for Joe Cole and play him as a central attacking midfielder much like Gazza was.

    Does anyone on here actually believe Ashley said a wow signing would happen? It just doesn’t seem like the kind of thing he would say or the club would do. They seem much more interested in the next generation of stars (and rightly so).

  • Tom

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:48 PM

    Comment #27

    Being linked with Mbia, and Inler again. Also a mystery young player from Southampton, which could just be the official announcement of Nile Ranger?

  • liamtoonbirchy

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:55 PM

    Comment #28

    i dont think inler would come to us but i would love mbia in our central midfield. Physical presence and good with the ball, can score goals too.

    I really hope we sign derdiyok to learn from viduka. I dont know which defender we will sign but i think it will be a left back.

  • Craigg

    Aug 26, 2008 at 12:57 PM

    Comment #29

    James i would be surprised if KK didnt go for Wright-Phillips, But i thought the same when Richard Dunne was available earlier in the summer.

    I dont think Scolari will sell Joe Cole as he he has started both matches so far and even with Robinho, Cole is so versatile he could use him in a few positions.

    What do you think about Kranjcar, SWP, Ball and Saviola ?

    I would think a £12m bid would get Kranjcar, £10m for SWP which would be £1m if we sold Milner to Villa for £9m, £1m for Ball and probably about £1m-£2m loan payment for Saviola would be paid for if we can sell Shola to ipswich for £3m.

  • nick

    Aug 26, 2008 at 1:17 PM

    Comment #30

    Pienso que esta muy bien que Shay Given puedo hablar espanol.

  • James

    Aug 26, 2008 at 1:50 PM

    Comment #31

    Craigg – we won’t sell Milner. KK said Ashley won’t allow it because he loves the lad. I’m not a big fan of Milner but he’s here for good I’m afraid.

    Don’t want Kranjcar but would take SWP because he’s a good player to bring off the bench to run at defenders, and we don’t have that option on the bench at the moment.

    We might even get SWP on a season long loan.

    If there’s one player left out there I want to get it’s Huntelaar. A front three of Huntelaar, Owen, and Martins would be awesome

  • mutoids

    Aug 26, 2008 at 1:57 PM

    Comment #32

    Tom – ranger signed ages ago but it just wasnt highly reported

  • rob

    Aug 26, 2008 at 5:10 PM

    Comment #33

    what a load of cr@p so what he speaks spanish u call him a ledended for that

  • ScandaToon

    Aug 26, 2008 at 6:36 PM

    Comment #34

    No Rob, we call him a legend because he is arguably the best GK in Newcastle’s history.

  • beyethegreat

    Aug 26, 2008 at 6:55 PM

    Comment #35

    rob lol u dumb f**he is a legend and 2 years ago not only did i think he was the best keeper in the prem but the best in the world when soumess was in charge if it was not for shay we hould have been relegated

  • reillers

    Aug 26, 2008 at 7:29 PM

    Comment #36

    Rob what’s your problem, all you do is whine about him.

    The wee lads a legend.
    I’m not sure Coloccini will be able to understand him speaking Spanish more then he would speaking English. Spanish in a Donegal accent like. Hell for most English lads the Donegal accent his hard enough to understand in English alone. LOL!!

  • Grant

    Aug 27, 2008 at 6:36 AM

    Comment #37

    “Shay Given has been back to his very best this season and he talked about the game on Saturday and how he manages to communicate with Fabricio Coloccini, who right now speaks little English.”

    “The defender doesn’t speak a word of English, which is unlike his Argentine team mate Jonas Gutierrez, who speaks English well.”

    Seriously Ed, it doesn’t take much editing to get stuff like that straight. I can’t tell if you made the speaking a little bit of English part up or actually read that?

  • Ed Harrison

    Aug 27, 2008 at 7:20 AM

    Comment #38

    Grant – please lighten up.

  • Grant

    Aug 27, 2008 at 4:51 PM

    Comment #39

    I feel bad man but it’s a basic level of journalist integrity. I appreciate what you’re doing here, I’m sure everyone does, it’s a great service to the public and for NUFC in general, but people come here for news and get conflicting information. Opinions and facts have to be clearly defined on either side of the fence or else it all gets a bit muddy. Keep up the good work and just read over each post a few times or send it off to someone else to check before you post it and everything should come together a bit better. Good work otherwise, though.


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