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Opinion

Jermaine Jenas found it difficult to adjust in Newcastle with nowhere to get a haircut…

3 years ago
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You really have to sympathise with Jermaine Jenas.

The player turned pundit explaining how difficult it was to adjust to life in Newcastle when Sir Bobby Robson signed him.

His choice of words, and the example he selected, could have been better thought out..

The former midfielder was chatting about Harry Kane, with talk of him potentially being approached by Real Madrid and whether or not he could adjust to live in the Spanish capital.

Harking back to his transfer from Forest to Tyneside, Jermaine Jenas starts off ‘I got dragged out of Nottingham when I was 18 and got sent to Newcastle’.

I’m sorry but are we missing something?

He wasn’t a slave or medieval serf, Jenas was offered loads more money and the chance to join a club at the top end of the Premier League, as well as then the chance to play in the Champions League.

He could have said no. Though as an 18 year old being offered the above, he would have to have been pretty stupid to do so.

Jermaine Jenas says that it was a ‘culture shock’ coming up to Newcastle as ‘there were not many black people’ on Tyneside at the time.

That might have been true but by that point Newcastle had already had many many players who had somehow adapted to our strange customs and ways, coming from even further afield than the 160 miles from Nottingham…

Nobby Solano, Faustino Asprilla, Mirandinha…Fumaca!

When it comes to thinking of an example of finding  Tyneside life hard to deal with, Jenas says that there was nowhere suitable to get his hair cut, so he had to go back to Nottingham when he needed a hairdo.

Earning thousands of pounds a week even back then, it is hard to have any sympathy for Jermaine Jenas and his struggling to settle in example, when he could have paid his Nottingham barber to pop up specially no doubt, or even popped down and back after training.

As for Harry Kane, he would be on hundreds of thousands of pounds a week if he went to Real Madrid, so could afford any creature comforts he could dream up – whether it was his barber popping over, or wherever he usually gets his fish and chips/curry/Chinese.

In these days of austerity for so many of us, well paid pundits/players agonising over missing the odd luxury from home, when moving for loads more cash and/or glory, is hardly going to elicit much sympathy from the masses.

Jermaine Jenas talking to BBC Sport:

“He (Harry Kane) strikes me as a bit of a home boy and being away from where he has been his whole life will be a shock to him.

“I got dragged out of Nottingham when I was 18 and got sent to Newcastle, which was a culture shock for me at the time.

“There were not many black people in Newcastle at the time so even just small things like being able to get my hair cut, there was no Afro-Caribbean barber shop in Newcastle, so I had to go back down to Nottingham to get my hair cut.

“It is little things like that, the comfort things that you go to, are gone, and you have to find a way to adjust.”

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