Jose Enrique has today talked about what it was like last summer, when he decided to stay at Newcastle and try to help the club get back to the Premiership at the first attempt.
Chris and Colin – wonderful job this season
Not all our players wanted to stay of course, and in any case we couldn’t afford to keep them all, and so it seemed that whoever we could move out and wanted to leave was sold.
We don’t think there was much thought put into who could stay and who could move, but in retrospect it seems to have worked out just great, because we were left with a much better squad than we thought.
Jose Enrique has talked about what happened last summer:
“Do I think the players who left the club regret it? I don’t know,”
“What I can say is every player who stayed at Newcastle following relegation did so because they wanted to.””They decided it was better to try and help the team win promotion than leave straight after relegation. That was the same for me.”
“I wanted to play in the Championship because I knew we had a great chance of getting straight back to the Premier League. Looking back now, I know it was the right decision.”
“Even last summer when I said I wanted to stay, I meant it. I don’t lie. People will now believe and realise why I did it.”
And he admits during the summer he didn’t know what to expect in the Championship, and manager Chris Hughton has also confessed he wasn’t sure exactly what to expect or how well the lads would do.
“For me, the worst games this season were the first ones,” “I remember saying to Jonás (Gutiérrez) at the end of games ‘I still don’t believe we are in the Championship, it has not sunk in.’”
“It felt as if we were missing out on something because the Premier League is so massive.” “But in many ways, it has not felt that we are out of it.”
“We get nearly 50,000 coming here every week and away from home, there are always two or three thousand. It has never stopped feeling like a big club, a Premier League club.”
We cannot forget what the lads at the Newcastle club have done this season.
They are as good or better than we were bad last season.
Those players who have left will never come back, and we think some of them may be thinking it would have been best to stay, but that would only be after what has happened and what the lads have achieved this season.
Chris and Colin and the rest of the players didn’t have a clue what would happen this season, and were even being told, after the 6-1 defeat at Leyton Orient for instance, that they’d be immediately relegated from the Championship.
And they were the real football experts telling them that. Yeah – right!
Going into the unknown willingly is probably a good definition of real courage, and the Newcastle coaches and players this season have shown loads of that, and they’ve brought this famous club back to the PL in just one season, and in great style too.
Whatever happens from now on – let’s not forget that.
They deserve the praise that comes with success, and we’re sure they’ll get it.
But then of course there will be a tremendous challenge next season in the Premiership, which is a different world and a difference class of football completely.
But the fight and passion now seen in the Newcastle camp has to stand the Tyneside club to have a decent season next season.
We are proud of the players and coaches at Newcastle this season, for what they have done for the Tyneside club – very proud.