Kevin Phillips has claimed that Isaac Hayden wanted to leave Newcastle United when he was a coach at Stoke City.
Speaking to Football Insider, the former Aston Villa and Sunderland striker spoke about how he tried to sign the England U21 international while he was a coach at the Potters, but his enquiry was instantly rejected:
“Hayden was a player that we enquired about when I was at Stoke.
“I, we, heard murmurs that he wanted to move further south but when we enquired it was a straight no and the phone was put down. That tells you how highly they regard him at Newcastle.
“He is one of those very underrated players. He is one of those players who go under the radar a little bit but he is so important to that club.
“Steve has had to deal with so many injury problems throughout his time at Newcastle so hopefully he can stay fit.”
Hayden would have been a solid signing
Indeed, Hayden would have been a solid signing for Stoke given his pedigree that he has built while playing for the St. James’ Park faithful.
Has Hayden been underrated for Newcastle this term?
The defensive midfield player has managed to rack up a total of 137 games in all competitions over the last five consecutive terms, scoring six goals and making a further ten assists (Transfermarkt).
Hayden has started this season well
Hayden has also started the 2020/21 season well for Steve Bruce’s team. The 25 year-old has won a quite impressive 5.2 of his duels per game in the Premier League so far, while he has also averaged 1.8 tackles, 1.3 interceptions and 1.3 clearances a match (Sofascore).
He does the dirty work that some other players may not otherwise want to do in the middle of the park, which has proved to be a valuable asset for the Magpies.
Perhaps it is not a shock then that the Toon rejected the advances of Phillips straight away, and Hayden certainly has not looked back since.
He will want to continue to have a strong campaign, especially if he has any ambitions of making the England squad for the Euros next year.
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