Chris Hughton – I Will Never Forget My Time At Newcastle

Chris Hughton was at Newcastle for about three years after joining Kevin Keegan in February, 2008.

In his final  18 months on Tyneside he took over the side in the summer of 2009 after we had just been relegated and then brilliantly managed the side to promotion and the Championship title with 102 points and 30 wins in the next season.

Chris was a hero to the fans and certainly to players such as goalkeeper Steve Harper , Joey Barton and Kevin Nolan among others, who  heaped praise on the way he brought all the players together when the club under Mike Ashley seemed to be in complete disarray in that terrible summer of 2009.

Chris Hughton with Championship trophy in May, 2010

After getting Newcastle promoted and having us mid-table, having humiliated Sunderland 5-1 at home and beating Arsenal at the Emirates 1-0 (the only time we have ever won there) –  he was shockingly fired by Managing Director Derek Llambias in December of 2010 and all hell broke loose on Tyneside – and rightly so.

Before last night’s game against his old club Chris was interviewed in The Argus and he had this to say about his time at Newcastle United:

“I was there for just under three years, not all the time as manager.” “I enjoyed living in the area. It was very much transitional times at the club.”

“It was a very good period for me and certainly one I will never forget.” “In any player or manager’s career you look back on big moments and that was a very big moment for myself.”

“It was my first managerial role, so it was very special for me, but more importantly it was very special for the club.”

“It has certainly helped shape my career, there’s no doubt about that.” “It’s very nice to hear those quotes from ex-players, but they were also very valuable for me.”

“It was an incredibly good group that I had and, whatever I was able to give them, they were able to give me more.”

“Certainly, if I look at my managerial career, it’s the role that gave me that opportunity.”

“I feel that I’ve developed as a manager over that period of time and going through what we went through in that season and the season after,  certainly gives you a grasp of what management is about, the ups and downs.”

“I’d like to think I’m a better manager for it.”

Chris always reminded us of Sir Bobby Robson, because he is a really good man, a good coach and a real gentleman of the game – just like Bobby.

It would be great if both Newcastle and Brighton can get the two automatic promotion spots this season – but nothing is ever certain in football.

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50 comments so far

  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:01 PM

    Comment #1

    What is Wagner going to do tonight. Play his best 11 in the hope they can get through to the next round or play a few “reserves” having half an eye on Saturdays game with us.

    I hope he is seduced by the cup and plays his best 11 and they get walloped by City.
    Knock some of their confidence for Saturday.

  • catchy in norway

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:02 PM

    Comment #2

    and he will always be welcome back

  • Bambams

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:04 PM

    Comment #3

    I would settle for Huddersfield winning after several injuries to key players….

    Keep them in the cup, more games they have to play the better

  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:05 PM

    Comment #4

    As I said previous post!! 🙂

    Essex Geordie Bill // Mar 1, 2017 at 1:04 PM

    Lochinvar, sorry for late reply, I’ve been trying to catch up with Ed’s fast moving international bus service. Probably need to repost this by the time I post it.

    lochinvar // Mar 1, 2017 at 7:55 AM

    Essex Geordie Bill ( from previous post ) – don’t know how your missus would have put up with 80minutes of verbal abuse at the TV but no doubt the last ten minutes were all wine and roses.
    Hope you made her pancakes as restitution

    I actually didn’t shout that much last night after the first 15 minutes as I was concentrating on my Guiness + Clarkes Bourbon whisky fueled Matrix like meditation control of the match. I have to say I was quite pleased with my efforts. ?

  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:08 PM

    Comment #5

    Bambams – I wouldn’t refuse that outcome either.

  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:10 PM

    Comment #6

    Doesn’t matter what team they put out, they’ll lose tonight and again on Saturday.

  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:11 PM

    Comment #7


    As manager?

  • giimps

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:13 PM

    Comment #8

    Bambam, i agree, Let them win vs Citeh but with a few injuries and suspensions, another game on top of their busy schedule will only help us ….and advantage we can get is going to help.
    If we play our game from 1st to last minute we can get a positive result on saturday hoping for 3 but will settle reluctNtly for 1 .

  • toonincheek

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:20 PM

    Comment #9

    Watta night. Just when it looked like all the missed chances
    were going to cost us, despite dominating the game – a total
    freaky fluke (we deserved a bit of good luck for a change,
    instead of all the bad) and THEN the winner.

    Great GREAT day to be a Toon supporter.

    Just seen that the “Full 90” is now on the website, so going to
    watch it again.

    Must add my admiration and respect for all the fans that made
    the long long trip for a midweek evening fixture.

  • toonincheek

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:24 PM

    Comment #10

    Regarding the “holding”.
    As has been said, far worse goes on at virtually every match
    with no action taken.

    It seems that you can put your arms around your opponent
    to restrict their movement or slow them down, but NOT
    use your hands to actually ‘hold’ them.

    Is that the way you guys see it?

  • Bobbybee

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:31 PM

    Comment #11

    I think a lot of people don’t appreciate how important timing is when making substitutions. It’s not always wise to make subs too early and one thing Rafa has proven many times is that he makes them at just the right times. That’s not luck, that’s years of experience and know how. The timing of both subs last night resulted in the win, just as they did against Norwich earlier this season. It’s easy to say he should have made those subs earlier, but he knows when to do it and he gets it right almost every time. Like I say, it’s not coincidence the timing results in wins. He knows what he’s doing, just let him get on with it. These wins aren’t down to good luck, it’s down to good management, great timing and changing tactics at just the right moment. We’re very lucky to have someone who knows exactly when to make the changes like Rafa.

  • toonincheek

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:32 PM

    Comment #12

    On topic –

    It’s great when someone leaves NUFC with our total respect.
    Then we can welcome them back at any time – and they can
    enjoy their return.
    Chris Hughton is one of not so many.

  • catchy in norway

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:34 PM

    Comment #13


    yes, why not, i think we as a club owe that much to him. and i’m not saying right now. everything he did was in the right way. and for a team that is not as good ( player for player) he has brighton flying.

  • Bobbybee

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:36 PM

    Comment #14

    Is there any truth in the talk that Robert Madley is a Huddersfield fan? If so, that’s very poor from the FA to give him that game last night. It’s not about whether he would cheat, it’s about how it appears to the public. If he is a Huddersfield fan, as I’ve heard, then I can’t believe they couldn’t have found another ref capable of officiating last night. Strange choice if that is the case.

  • Novocastrian66

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:40 PM

    Comment #15

    Yep he is a Huddersfield fan and obviously has a dislike of Newcastle United.

  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:42 PM

    Comment #16

    Please. Howay man. In the end that was a very fortunate win. We played most of the game with nobody who could put the ball in the back of the net; even with golden opportunities. We only looked a realistic threat after he made subs. All very late, giving very little time. You’re the one who backs Armstrong to the hilt, yet Rafa clearly doesn’t see anything in him to help us get promotion this season. Why is it that Rafa can do no wrong? It’s almost not permissable in some quarters to criticise him on here. Tantamount to sacrilege.

  • Novocastrian66

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:44 PM

    Comment #17

    If Ritchie avoids a booking in the next three games he has a clear run to the end of the season.

  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:45 PM

    Comment #18

    Thank you for clarifying when a referee can intervene at corners and free kicks.

    Makes sense


  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:47 PM

    Comment #19

    Was it my eyes but was Murphy carrying less timber – look slimmer and fitter

  • JackBall

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:50 PM

    Comment #20

    Watching replay on NUFC and funny how different the penalty was judged by the Sky announcers from those on Bein Sports. Polar opposite interpretation.

  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:50 PM

    Comment #21

    Bobby, you say, “It’s not always wise to make subs too early and one thing Rafa has proven many times is that he makes them at just the right times.”

    First, it is never wise to make subs either too early or too late. I din’t know how you can say he has proven many times that he makes subs at the right times Nobody knows how much better or worse we’d have been if he had made subs differently. It’s impossble to say. All you can do is say, “This is clearly not working.” The longer you leave it after that, the less chance you have because time is running out. The subs clearly made a difference and we got lucky in that we scored two goals in the fag end that was left.

  • Bobbybee

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:52 PM

    Comment #22

    B&B, don’t know what game you were watching, but the one I watched we fully deserved to win and by a bigger margin if we’d taken some great chances. No idea what you’re rabbiting about re Rafa, we’re top of the table thanks to him. I can give out fair assessment and have when I think he’s got it wrong, but last night he was spot on. He normally is though, which is why we’re top. You think it’s just luck? There was nothing lucky about last night, we fully deserved to win the game because we were the better side.

  • Novocastrian66

    Mar 1, 2017 at 1:56 PM

    Comment #23

    I dint see the match last night but I listened to the BBC commentator’s summary of the match, Jonathan Pearce, and he said Newcastle deserved to win the game.

  • Ibizatoon

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:00 PM

    Comment #24

    Is it not possible to say that we deserved to win, but at the same time it was lucky that we actually did?

    The Diame goal was nothing but luck, without it, we wouldn’t have won, whether we deserved to or not.

    We had missed chances, so did Brighton. Both had patches where they played better.

    All in all, a good game of football and a great result for us.

    On Rafa, clearly what he’s doing is working, we’re sat top of the league with some of the best stats (goals scored etc), but then again, we were / are expected to do that this season given our stature and squad. Criticism of Rafa should be kept in check as it’s ridiculous to hound him out when we are doing well, but he and the team are not perfect and it’s perfectly reasonable for fans to point out those imperfections, even if I personally find them tiring and ultimately pointless.

  • Bobbybee

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:01 PM

    Comment #25

    B&B, oh dear, you are upset today. Worried we might beat your beloved Huddersfield? 🙂 So, in your eyes, it’s just pure luck that he changes players and tactics by moving players around and we win the game? What a clown you are at times. It’s years of know how, it’s what separates the good from the bad. I’ll never understand how the likes of you are never happy. Top of the league with the best away record. Top scorers. Just luck then? You’re quickly becoming a bitter old man mate, you need to sort your head out. Enjoy this, it might not last. Give credit where it’s due. You can’t get any higher than top of the table, what more do you want? We were far and away the better team last night and they were top of the table. Still not good enough for you? You’re sounding like one of those Four Yorkshire men from Month Python. Moaning Minnie. Tactics and timing, he got both spot on last night but you could do better I suppose? Get a life man.

  • catchy in norway

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:01 PM

    Comment #26

    on the balance of play last night, i think we edged it, they had some good shots, but they were mostly from distance,
    passes we made more and had a much height completion rate
    shots we had more than them
    the ref gave them a head start,

    to bad we don’t play like that at home and against the lower teams

  • catchy in norway

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:04 PM

    Comment #27


    luck, we had both sides of it last night

  • JackBall

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:06 PM

    Comment #28

    You could day the Diame goal was luck, but the granting of a goal by the ref early on was pretty lucky too

  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:06 PM

    Comment #29

    I have been one of the biggest critics on hear lately about our style of play – but give credit where credit is due.

    Up to the penalty decision we were second best all-over the field once the decision was given it seemed to galvanise the team and from there on the TOON were in the driving seat and should of had at least a goal but for bad finishing.
    Start of the second as with most games we were poor and only for a great gelatine clearance could of been two down. after that we dominated the game except for a couple of counter attacks from Brighton.

    We fully deserved the win and if we play like we did yesterday with a lot more pace and movement we will finish in the top two.

    RAFA got his substitutions spot on last night with Murphy and Perez.

    Mind you think he needs a bit more help from his coaching staff in the technical area. Rafa is the only one on his feet bellowing out instructions. when Cathro was there he was always in the technical area geeing the players on

  • JackBall

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:07 PM

    Comment #30


  • Ibizatoon

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:16 PM

    Comment #31

    To be honest, in real time, I didn’t have too many objections to the penalty. Certainly not the ref calling it. Of course, luck or lack thereof is an ever present in football.

    Afterwards he was gesturing with a crossed arm shove. I’m not sure if it was actually Lascelles pushing him at the last moment that he deemed to be the foul.

    Anyway, we won and part of that was getting a lucky goal through Diame.

  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:18 PM

    Comment #32

    I will ignore you’re vitriolic ad hominem attack.

    I don’t know where you get this idea I’m not happy. See my posts following the game. Even this morning I’m rejoicing in our unbelievable away form.

    All I’m saying is that I’m not with the crowd who want to blow smoke up Rafa’s arse to the extent that he can do no wrong.

    You say there was nothing lucky about last night. Our equaliser is one of the luckiest goals you’ll see in your life. I don’t know how you can suggest otherwise. Or how you can imply that it was all part of Rafa’s game plan to go from 1-0 down to win the game in last 10 minutes. I mean that is truly exceptional. You want to claim people were wrong to call for the subs earlier. And Rafa had it all worked out. Sorry, but for me, that doesn’t stack up. If you want to believe in Rafa the messiah who can do no wrong, I’ve no problem with that. Crack on. But I’m entitled to disagree with you. Others can make their own minds up. And I respect their right to criticise Rafa.

    You don’t address my Arma point. Rafa clearly disagrees with your judgment on that one.

  • Bobbybee

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:22 PM

    Comment #33

    Catchy, the thing is, when we play good sides it’s more of a football match. Basically the best footballing side on the day wins. Lesser teams know they can’t match us at football and to their credit their try to stop us playing by spoiling. That’s fair enough, you play to your strengths. Birmingham came up and tried to play football and got well beaten, so you can understand why teams try to spoil. It’s frustrating but we need to learn how to play when the opposition is spoiling, which isn’t as easy as it sounds. In games like last night, where Brighton tried to play football, we got the better of it. I expect a similar game on Saturday. We need to be at our best again. Should be another good game.

  • JamesToon

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:23 PM

    Comment #34

    My team for huddersfield would be:



    Anyone but Colback



  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:27 PM

    Comment #35

    toonincheek – that would be impeding an opponent (if the ball is in play). If the ball is not within playing distance of either player you cannot impede the players progress. Indirect free kick.
    Rule from the book as follows:-

    Impeding the Progress of an Opponent
    Impeding the progress of an opponent means moving into the path of the opponent to obstruct, block, slow down or force a change of direction by an opponent when the ball is not within playing distance of either
    All players have a right to their position on the field of play, being in the way of an opponent is not the same as moving into the way of an opponent.
    Impeding the Progress of an Opponent
    Shielding the ball is permitted.
    A player who places himself between an opponent and the ball for tactical reasons has not committed an offence as long as the ball is kept in playing distance and the player does not hold off the opponent with his arms or
    If the ball is within playing distance, the player may be fairly charged by an opponent.

  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:29 PM

    Comment #36

    Me wouldn’t change the team – depending on how its going same subs 65 -70 mins when opposition are tiring. Thought Brighton were tiring the last twenty minutes.

  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:33 PM

    Comment #37

    Does Rafa escape all blame for our half performance against lowly Bristol City? Or for our poor showing last night leading up to their goal? It seems the messiah can do no wrong. Negatives aren’t his fault? Positives are down to him? The disciples don’t like any criticism of the messiah.

  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:36 PM

    Comment #38

    Ref this offence :-
    “A player who places himself between an opponent and the ball for tactical reasons has not committed an offence as long as the ball is kept in playing distance and the player does not hold off the opponent with his arms or body.”

    We see this being committed in just about every game with no action being taken – outstretched arm keeping the opponent away from the ball.

  • Bobbybee

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:37 PM

    Comment #39

    B&B, are you real? Of course it wasn’t the plan to go one down. I seriously have no idea what your problem is. That is the most Stupid comment. We went one down and then dominated. Granted the equaliser was lucky, but that’s football. The Gouff should have scored earlier, as should Atsu, but that’s football. What wasn’t lucky was the change in tactics at the right time, that was clever. And hey! Guess what? It worked.
    As for Arma, Rafa has said he has a future. It’s obvious he has a future, he’s a very good young player. I would’ve kept him here, because as has been proven right, we lost Gayle and have no like for like replacement, which Arma is. So what? What are you saying? It’s a differing of opinion, I’m not crying over it. We’ll get by because we have to. Do I think he got that wrong? Yes. You seem to think I believe Rafa is above criticism because I praised his tactics. That’s not true. I’ve criticised his tactics this season when I thought he’s got it wrong, but let’s be fair, he’s forgotten more that you and I know together because he’s in the game 24/7. Why do you think I’m blowing smoke up his arse? No idea what your problem is but you’ re being a dick mate. Last night he got it spot on. It wasn’t luck. You don’t win what he’s won by being lucky ffs. You can’t seem to give credit where it’s due for some bizarre reason, but that’s your problem, not mine. Where you get the idea I think he can do no wrong from is beyond me, but one thing I do know, is he’s a breath of fresh air after years of watching us lose.

  • Ibizatoon

    Mar 1, 2017 at 2:38 PM

    Comment #40

    Blackley…What specifically would you say Rafa was at fault for with the first half against Bristol City or the opening showing up to the Brighton penalty?

    I can only think that he might not have had them focused enough?

    He didn’t make any subs to improve the performance, so it wasn’t his team selection.

    Failing that, it’s his defensive approach?


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