Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Football: Young Guns Must Keep Feet on Ground When They Get Call

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Football: Young Guns Must Keep Feet on Ground When They Get Call

Article excerpt

STEVE WATSON'S advice for any potential young gun stepping on to the big stage with Newcastle United is simple: "Don't get carried away."

There are still many I United fans who believe I Ruud Gullit should never have sold the versatile and committed defender back in 1998 and none of them can forget his contribution in a black-and-white shirt.

But long before coming a whisker away from picking up a title medal with his hometown club in 1996, the North Shields-born player - who starred for Aston Villa, Everton and West Brom in a successful career - admits it wasn't all so straightforward.

The player - who once audaciously performed a somersault throw-in during a clash at Ayresome Park with Boro - said: "When I look back at that I think it's pretty daft.

"If I did that these days people would think 'what on earth is he doing?' "But you have to remember back then I had only just left school in the June and suddenly I was in Newcastle's first team.

"It was barmy really, and I remember the day before I made my debut I was sitting in class at college and then got dragged out to get on the bus to go to Wolves.

"When I first came into the team as a 16-year-old I was probably in a bit of a daze and I got through it on adrenalin.

"For me, I think I found it easy at that time, and it is different these days because of the profile of the club.

"At that time I didn't really appreciate what it entailed and just sort of sailed through the first season.

"But it was probably the second season when I struggled as the adrenalin wasn't there any more.

"It's different to the current side because there were no really big names in the side and we were in the old Second Division."

However, Watson revealed his second season under Ossie Ardiles wasn't so easy as the club found themselves sinking into the old Third Division. …

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