Now I have my issues/reservations about social media but I do believe it’s a necessary evil, the likelihood being that you are reading this article via a link on Twitter or Facebook, anyways… Pav is on Twitter!
I loved Pav in his time as a player up here.
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As a kid I took great delight in watching him take players on, one occasion in particular was a halfway line foray against Peterborough. I think we won 2-0, a game also remembered for the spectator in the tree at the Leazes End and his ‘disappearance’ after the 2nd goal.
I must admit a certain trepidation when Pav replaced Tommy Wright in nets, after all Tommy had been in goal for the 11 out of 11 winning streak at the beginning of the 92/93 season.
Also, I thought Tommy’s green with purple pin stripe GK top was nicer than Pav’s yellow number (very important to a kid of 9 going on 10).
But Pav took his chance and never looked back, proving himself as a good Premier League ‘keeper.
That save at Stan Collymore’s feet at the Gallowgate End, I was stood at the front of the Milburn Paddock and remember it vividly.
It is/was very clear that he loved it up here, as his iconic t-shirt quite proudly exclaimed PAVEL IS A GEORDIE.
The story that he shed a tear on the pitch of an empty SJP when learning he was to leave, shows that NUFC had got under his skin, when he was here he was home.
It’s very much what you give is what you get with NUFC fans and Pav gave it his all and received it back in spades full. The very fact that I only need to refer to him as a 3 letter shortened version of his first name, not once using his surname speaks for itself (even Les needs a ‘Sir’ before it and Ned a ‘Kelly’ after).
As well as ability, Pavel Srnicek offered character in his performances, something that is sadly lacking in footballers these days. His book is out soon, which granted, probably has a large factor in his presence on social media nowadays. I’m sure Joe Hart will have a book out somewhere or at some point and despite all his medals and England caps I’d much prefer to read Pav’s.
Pavel Srnicek was a player before social media existed, before media training was part of the norm. Footballers, for the most part, are so dull these days, bring back the mavericks I say!
I loved reading the story about him meeting up with NUFC fans in his home nation. Well I’m in Prague in July Pav, fancy a pint?
There’ll be two pints in the pump for you, one for taking NUFC to your heart and another for playing the game in the right spirit.
Follow Paul on Twitter @lyon1892