Newcastle United midfielder Isaac Hayden has revealed what the club’s owner Mike Ashley said to the players after the Magpies’ 4-0 win at Fulham on the final day of the Premier League season.
Hayden has stated his desire to leave Newcastle this summer in order to move close to his family in the south of the country and the 24-year-old might well have made his final appearance for the Magpies in Sunday’s win at Craven Cottage.
The midfielder revealed what Ashley, who is thought to have cancelled an end of season trip to Las Vegas, told the Newcastle squad following the end of the season, as Rafa Benitez’s side secured a 13th place finish with the convincing win at Fulham.
“I think it was called off. I wasn’t too privy to it as I had already booked my holidays a couple of months ago. I think a few of the lads were going to go on it but it was cancelled,” Hayden told the Chronicle.
“To be fair Mike Ashley came into the dressing room, shook everybody’s hand and said thanks for the season, we said thanks back. He is making an effort and trying to do the right things.”
Hayden’s comments about the actions of Ashley following Newcastle’s final day win against Fulham at Craven Cottage, suggests that although he is of course happy that the club’s players have kept them in the Premier League for another season, he is still willing to risk upsetting some players by cancelling something like an end of season trip. However, Hayden also revealed that Ashley did at least congratulate and thank the Newcastle squad for their efforts over the course of the season and managing to keep the club in the top flight for successive seasons. The midfielder has already expressed his desire to leave the club, and now Ashley will need to make sure Benitez does not join Hayden in wanting to make an exit from St James’ Park this summer. If Benitez is allowed to leave the club Ashley could well face the daunting prospect of having to seek a replacement, which would potentially risk the Newcastle owner’s chances of congratulating his squad next season after another good season. These are a very important couple of weeks for Newcastle’s future, and the club’s fortunes next season could well depend on what happens with Benitez’s future.