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Winger says Newcastle fans ‘Absolutely loved’ him but he had no choice but to leave after 12 starts

5 months ago
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Andros Townsend has been talking about Newcastle United ahead of tonight’s match at Selhurst Park.

More specifically, the part of his career he spent at St James Park.

Andros Townsend signing for Newcastle in January 2016 but then jumping ship with the rest of the rats when United were relegated in May 2016, after having the most productive time of his career ever, when scoring four goals and getting two assists in 12 Premier League starts for Newcastle and one sub appearance.

Andros Townsend now claiming Newcastle fans ‘Absolutely loved’ him…

Hmmm, NUFC supporters loved it when he played well in those handful of games but when somebody so quickly deserts your club for selfish reasons, after he had been rescued from a club (Tottenham) where he had been completely sidelined and a career going nowhere, I don’t think that ‘love’ endured very long.

Some four and a half years later and a very mediocre career spent at Crystal Palace, only two brief sub appearances for England since leaving Newcastle and the last of those on 15 November 2016, it is difficult not to laugh at a player who showed zero loyalty.

The funniest thing of all of course, was when he said (see below) after leaving NUFC, that Alan Pardew was the manager (then at Palace) to ‘take him to another level’…

Andros Townsend has now been speaking to the ITV Football podcast ahead of tonight’s match:

“It was incredible [playing for Newcastle].

“I was devastated at the time that the club did get relegated [in May 2016] because for myself as a flair winger who liked to take players on and excitement it was perfection for me.

“They [Newcastle fans] absolutely loved me but unfortunately, they got relegated, and I did so well that I felt I had to stay in the Premier League and unfortunately made a decision to leave.

“But it is a massive club – the fan base, the city, the fact that the stadium is in the city centre just adds to it, hopefully they can get back to where they were before.”

These comments are very similar to the ones Andros Townsend uttered in interviews (see below) after he deserted Rafa Benitez and the Newcastle fans back in summer 2016.

It has always amazed me that Andros Townsend avoided so much of the stick when the rats deserted the sinking ship after Newcastle’s relegation in May 2016.

Newcastle fans predictably slaughtered Moussa Sissoko who had made clear he was going to leave, Whilst Wijnaldum and Janmaat were next in line after they also made clear they wouldn’t be sticking around and showing any loyalty.

As for Andros Townsend, we had plenty of crocodile tears from him, how much he would have loved to stay but, but, but…it was all about Andros Townsend.

He had been in a desperate position at Tottenham, totally sidelined from the first team picture by Pochettino, not a league start for 10 months and his career going nowhere.

Then Newcastle came along at the end of January 2016 and paid a massive £14m, considering he had achieved next to nothing so far in his career.

Only 12 starts later (plus one as sub), he jumped ship and asked the Newcastle fans to understand because he had to look after himself.

Both he and his dad went public in saying a big reason why he had to leave Newcastle was to help him with England.

It was Newcastle who had rescued his club and country career, got him playing again and back into the England squad (ironically, it was Roy Hodgson in charge of the national side back then), only just missing out on the 2016 Euros.

Despite this, his lack of loyalty largely went unpunished at the time due to more visible villains such as Moussa Sissoko.

In four and a half years with Crystal Palace, Andros Townsend has scored 13 Premier League goals and got 18 assists.

Andros Townsend after deserting Newcastle – July 2016:

“I was loved by the fans and the manager was getting the best out of me, but at the end of the day I needed Premier League football at this stage in my career.

“So then it was sitting down and finding the right club for me and I think that was the easiest decision out of the lot of them.

“Hopefully he (Alan Pardew) can take my game to another level and build on the great start to the season they had last year.

“It was a pretty easy decision to choose Crystal Palace because of the direction they are heading.”

Andros Townsend – October 2016:

“It was extremely difficult to leave Newcastle but football is a short career and sometimes you use your head as opposed to your heart.

“England featured in that decision. Roy Hodgson said it didn’t matter if I was playing in the Premier League or Championship but when he lost his job it was also maybe a factor.

“I proved at Newcastle I am still good enough to play in the Premier League. It gave me great confidence again and I got back in the England squad.

“I think I am in a good place again, I am happy with my form and I am playing well. That is all that matters in my head.”

“I really enjoyed my time at Newcastle, I make no secret of that. It did cross my mind to stay but I need to be playing Premier League football if I want to make the most of my career.

“A year taking a step back in the Championship when at Spurs I wasn’t as playing as much as I’d have liked to, I decided I couldn’t really do that. I made the tough decision, I’m happy to be at Palace now, everything is going well, so hopefully it was the right decision.”

Troy Townsend – Father of Andros – October 2016:

Rafa Benitez did absolute wonders for him and ideally he would have loved to stay at the club….

“But if you are going to be noticed, if you are going to be recognised, obviously he had a massive disappointment (missing out on Euros) in the summer.

“If  you are going to get yourself back in that area where he wants to be, then unfortunately the Premier League is the only place to be.

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