Steve Stone is from Gateshead and has been a Newcastle fan all his life.
He never played for his boyhood club but back in 2010 NUFC took him on as assistant to Peter Beardsley looking after the reserves.
After a number of different roles he eventually became number two to John Carver when Alan Pardew walked away, the pair of them almost managing to relegate Newcastle from what had looked an impossible position.
Their first game in charge was ironically against Burnley on new year’s day 2015, Newcastle actually played some really good football and should have won comfortably. However, despite leading 2-1 and 3-2 it eventually finished 3-3.
However, that proved to be a rare ‘high’ spot as their first 18 games in charge saw only two wins. Safety only achieved on the final day of the season with a 2-0 Jonas Gutierrez inspired victory, it was also to prove to be Carver and Stone’s final game in charge as well, as the pair were sacked.
Recently appointed as Burnley reserves manager, Steve Stone (pictured above to the left of Carver in the NUFC dugout) is now desperate for Newcastle to lose on Monday night, saying ‘work is work’ as he hopes Sean Dyche’s team come out winners.
Stone saying he has been giving the first team management set-up the benefit of his Newcastle United knowledge and experience.
Steve Stone praises Rafa Benitez as a ‘top manager’ and he has been impressed with how he has handled Newcastle’s early season problems.
The former England player thinks Newcastle are heading in the right direction now and hopefully that will still be the case by Tuesday morning, Rafa’s team still only one point above the relegation zone.
Steve Stone talking to the Lancashire Telegraph:
“I’m from Newcastle, so I have been to watch them a lot.
“It has been good to have a chat with Woany (Burnley assistant manager Ian Woan) about what’s going on, and how Newcastle play, just give them a little bit of a heads up, so it’s nice to be feel part of what the first team are doing as well.
“Nick Ashby, one of our scouts, was up there the other weekend as well, so I have had a chat with him as well, and obviously the relationship I have, the history I have had there (at Newcastle United).
“I love Newcastle United as a football club.
“I supported the club as a boy, but work is work!
“It actually makes it more special, you want to put one over on them (Newcastle United), it’s three points at the end of the day.
“Unfortunately we seem to be playing teams who have picked up a little recently, and they have, because they’ve got everybody fit.
“Rafa Benitez is a top manager.
“I have watched him, especially at the start of this season, where he’s been getting a bit of stick with the way they ave been playing, how deep they’ve been dropping, but if you look at his goal difference, he’s been clever about that.
“It’s better than everybody else’s at the bottom, he’s shut up shop and realises his cup finals are against your Burnleys, the teams around them.
“That is what he will say.
“They have got the likes of Salomon Rondon fit, Kenedy has hit a bit of form again, Matt Ritchie is a good player.
“They seem to be going in the right direction.
“But every game is ridiculously hard in the Premier League, it doesn’t matter who you play.
“He’s made them very hard to beat. Getting beat, and by a lot of goals, can drain confidence in the side, and that’s what he’s worked on.
“But Burnley got a good point at Leicester and if you have lost a few games, you have to start somewhere, with a nil, you can’t lose then, and you can build from there.
“Any time you go away in the Premier League and get a clean sheet and a point, you’ve done a great job.”