Isaac Hayden opens up on his Newcastle future and reveals why he was sent off in candid interview

Isaac Hayden.
Isaac Hayden.

Isaac Hayden still wants to leave Newcastle United.

Hayden asked for a move in the summer so he could be with his infant daughter.

Isaac Hayden and Rafa Benitez.

Isaac Hayden and Rafa Benitez.

However, manager Rafa Benitez blocked the request.

Hayden was dismissed for a reckless challenge on Cardiff City’s Josh Murphy, brother of Newcastle winger Jacob, in the club’s second game of the season.

And the 23-year-old – who has started United’s last three games with Ki Sung-yueng away for the Asian Cup – has opened up about a “difficult” six months as he waits on news of a possible move in this month’s transfer window.

“I’m not going to lie, it’s obviously been difficult,” said Hayden, who is preparing for tomorrow’s third round FA Cup tie against Blackburn Rovers at St James’s Park.

Isaac Hayden at Cardiff.

Isaac Hayden at Cardiff.

“The fans will have their own opinions, which I fully appreciate.

“I’m not going to be their favourite player – I knew that after the sending off. That was one of those things where Murphy was taking the p***.

“To be honest, I wanted to give him one, but I gave him a little bit too hard a one and got sent off, and it made me look a little bit worse than it was.

“With all due respect, he was taking the p*** a bit. I knew I was coming on, and I was thinking ‘whack him hard, first one’, but obviously I whacked him a bit too hard and got the sending off.

“From that moment on, I’ve just tried to crack on. The manager will say the same thing, and I don’t think the staff have had any problems. I’m here to do my job.

“It’s been difficult, but hopefully the club have known for six months what the situation is, and there have been a few conversations already. We’ll just see what happens over the next few weeks.

“As far as I’m concerned, I just get on with my job in training, and whenever I’m called upon, I try my best. That’s all I can do, really.”

Hayden, signed from Arsenal in the summer of 2016, feels his finally up to speed, having only played a handful of games last year.

“It’s difficult,” said Hayden. “I’ve spoken about it with the manager – if you look at 2018 as a calendar year, then I think I’ve only started five or six games.

“You can’t start five or six games and then expect to be 100% match sharp, and the games that I have started have been games like Man City away, Chelsea away, Liverpool away, games which realistically, you can’t really show what you can do or what you want to do.

“Watford was a bit more of a game where I could get on the ball and show what I could do, but these types of games are more games where you’re going to be defending and trying your best to keep the ball when you do get it.

“The next game’s Chelsea, isn’t it? With Man City and Spurs after that, but I’m not complaining. I just get on with it, and that’s the situation. I don’t think there are any big problems with Mo (Diame). He’s fine, the manager has a lot of faith in Sean (Longstaff).

“It’s up to the club. I’m the club’s player so I can’t comment on that, but they’ve been made aware of the situation since the summer. They know the situation hasn’t changed, so it’s up to them really to work with me to try to find a solution.

“I think there have been conversations already, that are ongoing, and I’m just doing my job until what is done is done. That’s all I can do.”

Hayden was in the side beaten 2-0 at St James’s Park by Manchester United on Wednesday night.

Goalkeeper Martin Dubravka gifted the visitors their opener after spilling a free-kick from Marcus Rashford in the 64th minute.

Rashford netted their second 10 minutes from time.

“You can’t blame Martin,” said Hayden. “It was a silly foul to give away in the first place, and then obviously everyone’s got to go in for the second ball.

“It’s not just Martin’s mistake, everyone, as a collective, can do better on that. I thought we did really well in the first half.

“We contained them, won our tackles and they didn’t really create too many chances. The second half wasn’t quite good enough. We ran out of steam a bit towards the end, but it’s difficult when they’re bringing on (Romelu) Lukaku and (Alexis) Sanchez.

“We gave it our best shot, but it’s difficult when they keep the ball as well as they did in the second half. They kept it moving, and it was difficult for us to get there, especially as midfielders.

“They had (Paul) Pogba in behind, in the left-hand side space, and every time we went to press the ball, they flicked it around the corner and he was in. That’s why they’re Manchester United.”