Dan Burn has admitted he thought his chance to play for Newcastle United had gone after the takeover.
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A boyhood supporter of the club, Burn was released by Newcastle’s academy at the age of 11 and duly embarked on a journey that would eventually see him become a Premier League regular.
Making his breakthrough at Darlington, the 30-year-old joined Fulham as a teenager and spent five years there before moving to Wigan and later Brighton, where he impressed in the top-flight and was even touted as a potential England international.
While Burn has revealed he had a burning desire to play for Newcastle someday, he admitted that the club’s takeover cast doubt in his mind. Backed by Saudi Arabian money, it’s certainly a logical conclusion to come to, with the club linked with all manner of expensive signings from around Europe.
Still, though clearly that wasn’t clear at the time, Newcastle have avoided that strategy thus far. Indeed, they have made smart additions, bringing in the right characters to push up the League as one, rather than blow the bank on players who may not fit in.
What has Burn said of Newcastle?
Speaking to talkSPORT, the Newcastle star said (2:39): “It’s crazy that I’m playing for Newcastle to be honest.
“I never thought I’d get that opportunity. I remember, just at the back end of last year, I was walking the dog with my dad and as soon as the takeover happened I said ‘I doubt I’ll be able to play for Newcastle now’.
“A few months later, I was up here signing, so it’s crazy.”
How good a signing has Burn been?
For a reported £13m, it’s hard to think of a better defender Newcastle could have signed.
Able to operate either at left-back or a central defender, Burn’s debut against Aston Villa was hailed by Gary Neville for bringing “real composure at the back”, while Eddie Howe has even put the captain’s armband on him at times.
Given Newcastle’s defence was labeled as of a “Championship” standard by Jamie Carragher in October, it was imperative the club got their recruitment in that area right if they were going to stay in the Premier League. Luckily, they did.
While Burn thought his chance was gone, he’s proven a remarkably successful addition and is certainly grabbing his opportunity with both hands.