Very good news today that Steve Harper has returned to Newcastle to take up a role as the goalkeeping coach at the Newcastle Academy.
Well, it’s difficult to keep Steve away from Newcastle after he spent 20 years at the club having been signed from Seaham Red Star – his home town club – back in 1993 when Kevin Keegan was the manager.
Steve Harper when at Newcastle
Here’s the announcement just made by Newcastle.
Newcastle United’s longest serving player, Steve Harper, has been appointed as the Club’s new Academy goalkeeping coach.
The stopper spent 20 years at St. James’ Park between 1993 and 2013, making 199 appearances and representing the Magpies in the FA Cup final, Champions League, UEFA Cup and Europa League as well as domestic games.
Following his release from Tyneside, Harper spent time at Hull City and Sunderland, but has returned home to start the next step of his career.
At the Club’s Little Benton Academy, the 41-year-old will work with goalkeepers from under-nine to under-16 level out on the training pitch, as well as helping to create a programme that develops the youngsters in a consistent manner that meets the philosophy of Newcastle United.
Steve gets in on the ground floor and he will be working for one of the best managers in the world in Rafa Benitez.
This is what Steve said on the appointment:
“I’m delighted to be working with the young goalkeepers at the Academy,”
“I’ve been involved in grassroots football in the area for the last six years so I have extensive knowledge of the many junior football clubs throughout the region.”
“It’s great to be back at the Club in a coaching capacity and I’m looking forward to starting.”
When Steve left Newcastle in the summer of 2013 he played for Steve Bruce at Hull City for a couple of years, but has been a free agent over the summer and although he received some offers he’s decided to hang up his gloves and come back home.
Harper is still a young 41 and he played 199 times for the Newcastle first team and 31 times at Hull and earlier appearances when he was young on loan at Bradford City, Gateshead, Stockport County and Hartlepool.
He also played 5 times on loan at Brighton in early 2012 and he was at Sunderland last season but he never appeared in the first team; in total he played 289 first team games in his career.
It’s great to have Steve back and passing on his expertise to the youngsters at Newcastle.