It’s hard to know if there is a better person in football than Newcastle’s former manager Chris Hughton.
Chris Hughton – while at Newcastle
And Chris reminded us a lot of Bobby Robson, for the way he handled the press and how everybody around him admired the Londoner, and what a gentleman he was.
And it’s hardly surprising that Chris held Sir Bobby Robson in great esteem.
Both men were real gentlemen in the often ruthless world f football, and both were harshly and surprisingly sacked by the club, which is another similarity the two shared at Newcastle.
Mark Douglas, in the Newcastle Journal, has interviewed Chris today, and this is what our former manager had to say:
“Bitterness? I have never felt that about what happened,” “I don’t think that way and I don’t harbor grudges towards anyone at the club. If I am absolutely honest I don’t look at the club now and think ‘What if?’”
“What is normal when you lose your job is that it’s very tough for a while. You watch games but you want to be working.” “But I wanted to look forward from the moment it changed and I lost my job.”
“Now I don’t look at Newcastle and wish them any ill feeling whatsoever. I’m absolutely delighted at what Alan Pardew has done and I’m delighted Newcastle are there.” “For the fans who were very good to me, it’s great they’ve had success.”
“And there are still players there who were there with me when I was there and I am really glad they are doing well.” “The likes of James Perch, of course – and Leon Best and Danny Simpson and Mike Williamson. It’s fantastic to see them part of everything that is happening because we knew what good players they were.”
“Then of course the club has recruited very well. I really like Yohan Cabaye and Hatem (Ben Arfa) is showing what a fantastic talent he is.” “I have not been back to Newcastle since it happened,” “It hasn’t been because I haven’t wanted to.”
“I just haven’t got round to it yet but I think now, what I would really like is to lead a team out at St James’ Park. That would be a fantastic occasion.” “Of course I would like to say a proper goodbye but football doesn’t always work like that.”
“If it happens one day, of course I would really be looking forward to it. I think it would be a very proud moment for me. It would have been fantastic if it had happened for us at Birmingham.” “All of my memories of Newcastle are very fond ones although I have always been honest enough when people talk to me about it to point out that I was part of the coaching staff that got the club relegated.”
“Luckily I left with a good record and what I felt was nothing to really prove. But what really pleased me was doing it for the people up there, who live and breathe their football.” “Wherever I am in the world, I still get Newcastle fans coming up to me and thanking me for the promotion season which is so nice.”
“It is an incredible support and a really, really lovely part of the world. I would love to see them go from strength-to-strength.”
Chris Hughton is greatly admired by Newcastle fans the world over, not just because of the magnificent job he did for the club when it was really needed, but also because of who he is, as a person.
He’s one of the real gentlemen of football, and even after he was ruthlessly sacked by the Newcastle Board, he hasn’t had one bad thing to say about Newcastle United.
It’s people like Chris Hughton who are the salt of this earth, and they deserve to be successful in life.
We look forward to welcoming Chris Hughton back to Newcastle, which will be some occasion indeed.