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Newcastle Turned Down Aaron Ramsey For £500,000 Twice!

8 years ago

Aaron Ramsey scored the winner at Wembley on Saturday to hand Arsenal, and Arsene Wenger, their first trophy after a nine year drought for their long suffering fans…

I can just imagine all the Newcastle United fans being really really pleased for the Arsenal fans who in that time have had to put up with watching great players and football every season, ending with a top four spot and Champions League football every year, including a final appearance in the World’s biggest club competition.

However, it gets worse – for Newcastle fans that is.

Aaron Ramsey who scored that winner yesterday, his 16th (sixteenth!) goal of the season from midfield, could and should have been a Newcastle player.

Ex-Newcastle United player and all round great bloke, Robbie Elliott, reminded me of a conversation I had some months ago when he sent out a couple of messages on Twitter yesterday.

It was at the annual Wallsend Boys Club fundraising dinner and I was sat next to Pete Kirkley.

For those who don’t know, Pete Kirkley has an outstanding reputation as a talent spotter for Newcastle United and other clubs over the years, as well as being one of the many great people who are responsible for the outstanding success that Wallsend Boys Club is to this day.

Pete’s roll call of honour includes quite possibly the greatest Newcastle player ever, Peter Beardsley, amongst many others, Pete Kirkley having set up the deal that brought Peter back to Tyneside from Canada.

At the dinner, Pete related the story to me of how he’d persuaded Aaron Ramsey to come up to Newcastle United on trial when he was around 15 or 16, back in 2006/07.

Ramsey loved it at Newcastle and was keen to come, Cardiff had agreed a fee of £500,000, but….Newcastle wouldn’t pay it. This was the pre-Ashley period when Glenn Roeder was manager and Freddy Shepherd was in charge.

It gets worse, because Pete Kirkley managed to persuade Aaron Ramsey to come back up for a further trial where he again impressed, training with the Newcastle first team despite being only 15/16, but again….Newcastle wouldn’t pay the £500,000.

Not the best of decisions by Newcastle United, going alongside missing out on the likes of Shearer and Beardsley as kids, as well as having the likes of Sami Hyypia on loan and passing up the chance to sign him.

Of course the rest is history with Arsenal ending up paying around £5m for Ramsey some 18 months later, how Aaron Ramsey must be kicking himself after missing out….


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