Isaac Hayden: Playing for Newcastle United is a 'privilege' – thanks to brilliant fans
Isaac Hayden says playing for Newcastle United is a “privilege” – after hearing his name chanted for the first time at home.
Hayden asked to leave the club last summer – and again ahead of this January’s transfer window – for family reasons.
However, Hayden spoke about a change in his circumstances on transfer deadline day after opting to stay following discussions with new head coach Steve Bruce, who he played for at Hull City earlier in his career.
There have also been talks over a new deal at St James’s Park.
Hayden spoke about the moment fans chanted his name during the season-ending game against Fulham last season in the summer.
And the 24-year-old’s name was chanted by fans at St James’s Park during last weekend’s 1-0 defeat to Arsenal, his former club.
“Like I’ve said, it’s one of those things in football,” said Hayden. “I just try to do my best. If the fans appreciate that, even better. I think I’ve shown over the past six months the kind of character that I have and the character I am and the intensity and workrate that I put in. If that’s appreciated, then fantastic.”
It was the first time in three years that Hayden had heard his name chanted at the stadium.
“It’s been nice,” said Hayden. “You know, it’s one of those things. Like I said in a previous interview I did with the football club, when you get an opportunity like this … it’s 52,000 fans at home.
“You don’t get this passion for football at many other football clubs. There’s not many football clubs in England which have got this fanbase and this passion. To play in front of it week in, week out should be a privilege for anyone.”
Asked about his situation at the club, Hayden added: “At the end of the day, last season I still did my best. I still gave everything that I could for the football club.
“Now the window’s closed, there’s a bit more certainty. This is the group that’s going to be going forward this season.
“We’re just fully focused on what we have to do and how the manager wants us to play.”