Eddie Howe names ‘key voice’ at Newcastle United – on and off the pitch

For a few minutes, it looked like it was going to be a long, long night for Dan Burn.

Burn was up against Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday night – and the England international quickly got into his stride.

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However, Burn, with the help of Joelinton in front of him, was able to get to grips with Saka after “adjusting his game” – and the fixture ended goalless.

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And Eddie Howe was asked about the performance of Burn, signed from Brighton and Hove Albion a year ago, after the game.

“Dan gives us so much,” said United’s head coach. “I can’t speak highly enough of him, personally, as a lad.

“I think his performance sort of typifies that. In the first five minutes of the game, he was up against a tough opponent who gave him a couple of problems, but then Dan’s experienced enough and wise enough just to adjust his game and find a solution to that problem.

“Aerially, he’s obviously very good, and physically, he’s very good. But he’s also a leader, and his voice is key to us. The back four has just found a way to gel really nicely together.

Newcastle United defender Dan Burn against Arsenal.Newcastle United defender Dan Burn against Arsenal.
Newcastle United defender Dan Burn against Arsenal.
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“But, without the protection of the other players in the team, it’s a lot harder, so it really is a collective effort.”

Burn, 30, has been playing at left-back this season ahead of Matt Targett, who’s sidelined for at least a month with what Howe has described as a “nasty” heel injury.