Hero Shay Given was more interested in talking about the fabulous efforts of his team-mates, than his own brilliant personal display last Saturday at Chelsea, where his experience gave added confidence to the Newcastle defense.
Shay Given – a great team player for Newcastle United
Shay talked to nufcTV about the game:
“We knew it was going to be tough and no-one really gave us a chance before the game,” “But it was a great team effort and in the end the draw was thoroughly deserved.”
“We’ve had to soak up a lot of pressure but have held firm and there were a lot of strong performances.” “The point is a massive lift.”
It could have been so different early in the first half when Frank Lampard looked as though he had to score with a header from 8 yards out. But Shay made a brilliant one handed save low to his right to keep the ball out, when most goalkeepers wouldn’t have been able to react quickly enough.
Frank held his head in his hands in disbelief at the save.
Shay talked about that crucial save:
“It was a good cross from Malouda and luckily I’ve decided not to come for it so it’s given me time to get set.” “It was a good header but I’ve got a strong enough hand on it and kept it out.”
“But it’s not about individuals, I felt the whole team really put a good shift in and worked their socks off.”
Chelsea also had the ball in the net, but the goal was rightly given for offside on the scorer, Joe Cole:
“I was just trying to save the shot first of all. But the ball has gone up in the air and Joe Cole has stabbed it in.”
“Luckily the linesman flagged and you need those sorts of breaks.”“That gave us something to hold on to and fight for and you need that sort of luck.”
Then his save from a Frank Lampard free kick, when he almost back pedaled into his own goal, but just managed to keep the ball in play, even as he lost his footing on the AstroTurf:
“Frank’s got a bit more on the free-kick than I thought, I thought it was dropping shorter.”
“But it kept sailing on and I was in two minds whether to flick it over the bar or to keep it out.”
“I decided to go for the catch but there’s AstroTurf just behind the goal so I lost my footing on that.” I fell to the floor but I was happy to keep it out and it definitely wasn’t across the line.”
Shay is one of those players, like Alan Shearer before him, who could just about play for any team he wanted to in the Premier League, but he has chosen to be loyal to a club that still hasn’t won anything for almost 40 years.
Once we get the new owners in next year, which we will, we must go all out to win something and reward our unsung heroes, like Shay Given as one example, for their immense loyalty and service to the Newcastle United club. Nobody deserves it more.
What do you think?
Comments very welcome.