Dan Burn: I was 'hurt massively' by Newcastle United release

Dan Burn has opened up on being rejected by his boyhood club – ahead of his return to St James’s Park.
Dan Burn.Dan Burn.
Dan Burn.

The Blyth-born defender will line up for Brighton and Hove Albion against Newcastle United this afternoon.

Burn was released as a schoolboy by Newcastle and ended up starting his professional career at Darlington a decade ago.

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Reflecting on his early association with United, Burn told the Brighton & Hove Independent: “They had the academy and then something below called the development centre, where the best local lads would go to.

“I was there for three or four years, and then released, and probably rightly so, because I was pretty crap at the time.

“I was tall for my age back then, but everyone caught up to me, and I didn't really shoot-up again until I was 15 or 16.

“For a good four or five years, I was pretty terrible, to be honest. It took me a while to grow into my body.

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“It hurt massively to be released. It would for any kid. It was at Christmas, so it spoiled it for that year. It hurt for a long time and knocked us, but it is that adversity that makes you want to come back and do it again.”

Burn would later have a chance to sign for Newcaste, but he opted to join Fulham.

“I could have joined them later, said the 27-year-old.

“When I had my medical at Fulham, I got a call saying that Newcastle had matched it (the offer).

“But, because I had been down at Fulham and met the manager (Mark Hughes), and they’d pursued us for a long time, I thought Newcastle just did it so that they didn't look bad, because they have lost a local lad, if you know what I mean.

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“So I was quite happy that I moved away. Not that my mates were a bad influence on us, but I didn't want to get to the point where I was getting dragged out and going for drinks and getting up to no good and stuff. At Fulham I could just concentrate on the football.”