Newcastle United confirm surprise summer departure to Premier League rivals

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Eddie Howe’s confirmed the departure of an “elite" member of his Newcastle United backroom team.

First-team coach analyst Mark Leyland, recruited from Liverpool in late 2021, will join Manchester City at the end of the season.

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“Yes, he is (leaving),” said United’s head coach. “He’ll leave us at the end of the season, but he’ll work through to then.

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"Losing key members of staff is never ideal, but I’ve been here many times before when that’s happened. It’s part of growing. People will always be looking for elite members of staff – and that’s one of the things we have to be aware of as a football, I think.

"Mark goes, but he’ll go with our best wishes. He’s currently here, and fully committed to our journey.”

Leyland – who previously worked with Howe at Burnley – will reportedly take up a “new international position” which will see him work across all the club who are part of the City Football Group.

Speaking last season, Howe spoke about the “big impact” Leyland had made at United. Howe said at the time: “We love him to bits, and he's been an integral part of our team.”

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Newcastle United head coach Eddie Howe.Newcastle United head coach Eddie Howe.
Newcastle United head coach Eddie Howe.

Leyland, a lifelong Liverpool fan, posted a message on social networking site LinkedIn late last year reflecting on his first 11 months at Newcastle.

"The World Cup break has given me some breathing space to take stock of what has been an incredible 11 months at NUFC,” said Leyland. “It has been an unbelievable start to what I'm sure will be a fascinating journey at this huge club.”