21-year-old new arrival Isaac Hayden has given some interviews today and he’s said he has learned a lot from Rafa Benitez in the short time he’s been at Newcastle.
And Isaac had the opportunity of playing at Hull last season and helped Steve Bruce’s side get promoted by winning the play-off 1-0 against Sheffield Wednesday at Wembley.
Although the Geordie manager surprisingly resigned from Hull earlier this week – it looks like because of his utter frustration the club had not signed any new players this summer.
Isaac Hayden – Newcastle are better at passing the ball
Isaac thinks we have some very good players at Newcastle and he is able to contrast the current Newcastle side with the Hull City side who were promoted last season.
He pinpoints the specific area where Newcastle are superior:
“The main difference between this team and Hull City last year is that we at Newcastle pass the ball a lot better than we did at Hull.”
“I think if we get the ball down and if we want to play football – one or two touches – and maybe on a few occasions against Southend we played too many touches.”
“Yet overall we played it around nicely and got a few passes and moved on from there.”
“If we play like we have been during pre-season and take it on a notch in terms of moving it a bit quicker in some certain areas, then I don’t think we’ll have any problems as there are some quality players here.”
“It’s quite comfortable in there but again it’s still early days for me and I’m still getting used to my team-mates.”
“I’ve only really played with Rolando before at England level, so I’m still getting used to my team-mates but it’s been good so far and I’m enjoying it.”
“I’m learning every training session, the manager’s been fantastic for me personally and obviously for the team.”
“I’m just trying to learn as much as I can, integrate further with the team and work towards getting wins which we need.”
“For me it’s about progressing as a team and moving forward, which I hope we will do.”
It will be interesting to see if Isaac can make the starting lineup against Fulham in a week’s time in what is our first league game in the Championship for over six years.
In fact, with so much competition a key area will be who the two holding midfielders will be – and certainly Jonjo Shelvey looked good against Southend on Tuesday night.
He’s cut out those Hollywood passes.
We’ll get a clue tomorrow with the starting line-up Rafa puts out against Vitesse in our final friendly of pre-season and our first at St. James’ Park.
We’ll take special note at how Newcastle pass the ball tomorrow.