We always liked Aaron Hughes, when he played for Newcastle from 1997 until Graeme Sourness sold him in 2005 to Aston Villa.
Aaron Hughes – one great professional
While Aaron was never top class, he was a guy who married a Geordie girl and you could count on him to always give 100%, and he could play in multiple different positions too.
He could have played so many more games for Newcastle than he did, although he did appear for Newcastle in 278 games with 7 goals – not too shabby – and he was only 25 when he left Newcastle.
Aaron moved to Aston Villa and ended up at Fulham, where he has been a big success and played 130 games so far for the London side, and plays in the Europa League final tonight against Athletico Madrid.
And Aaron talked about Newcastle being back with the big boys today:
“The thing about the Newcastle players this season is they have been together throughout.” “That can be a big factor for them next season and will hold them in very good stead.”
“A club that big, with that fan base, does not deserve to be where it has been.” “They have gone straight back up, and the players and staff have earned it.”
“Sometimes, when a club drop down, they struggle.”
Northern Ireland international and captain Hughes, who has played 71 times for his country, is also the latest to praise the job of Newcastle rookie manager, Chris Hughton.
“The manager has done a good job.” “He has the players together, and they have worked hard. It has been a long, tough season for them, and they deserved to win it.”
“They have won it well – they thoroughly deserved it.” “I am looking forward to playing against them again. I always enjoy going up there.”
“I was lucky enough to play there a lot when I was younger.” “It is always a good atmosphere.” “Unfortunately, United had a bad season, but they have turned it around. They deserved to come back up.”
“It will be good for the Premier League – the stadium is always full, and a lot of fans travel to every game.”
Aaron made his debut for Newcastle under Kenny Dalglish in the Champions League in Barcelona of all places, and had a fantastic game that night as we remember, and he also put in some excellent displays for Newcastle manager Bobby Robson, who was a big believer in the young player.
The other good thing about Aaron is that he’s hardly ever injured, and his 472 first class appearances so far in his career is testament to that, for player who is still only 30.
Hughes talked about that debut game in Barcelona 13 years ago, when he was just 17:
“It is one of those things. It was a long time ago.” “Barcelona had not qualified, and it seems more glamorous than it was!”“I was not thinking ‘here I am making my debut at Barcelona’, I was just thinking it was my debut.”
“It could have been anywhere, and I would have been happy, but I suppose it was a bit more special because of who we were playing against.”
“It was a pity we did not go all the way with Newcastle when we were knocked out against Marseille.” “We also reached the quarter finals against Sporting Lisbon.”
“We had two good runs in the competition.” “The disappointment of not getting there makes you that little bit more hungry.”
We wish Aaron the best of luck tonight, but there’s one thing for sure – watch Hughes have a very solid game in central defense for Fulham tonight.