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Newcastle United legend Shay Given now relishing role as First Team Coach

2 months ago
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Shay Given is the best goalkeeper any Newcastle United fan has ever seen.

He is a true NUFC legend and whilst Kenny Dalglish got a lot of things wrong in his time at St James Park, paying £2m for Shay Given was certainly not one of them.

After 12 years of brilliant service, twice selected by his fellow professionals in the PFA Premier League team of the year, even Shay Given had seen enough after 18 months of life under Mike Ashley after his takeover of NUFC.

In June 2018, Frank Lampard appointed Shay Given as Derby County’s goalkeeping coach.

Lampard’s replacement Phillip Cocu was sacked in November and Wayne Rooney made interim boss, then when he (Rooney) got the job on a permanent basis in January (2021), he made Shay Given his First Team Coach.

Interesting how things turn out, back in the playing days, you would never have put Shay Given with Wayne Rooney as a future management partnership , though circumstances often play a massive part in dictating how things turn out.

Derby County had a horrendous start to the season with one win and nine defeats, plus three draws, in the opening thirteen Championship matches.

Since Wayne Rooney took over, with the help of Shay Given and others,  they have had a much improved six wins, four draws and only four defeats in these last fourteen league games. They are still only third bottom of the Championship but the new management team, including Shay Given, appears to be having a positive impact.

Good luck to Shay Given, Newcastle’s greatest ever goalkeeper, now hopefully finding his way in coaching and even maybe potential management material, if he decides to go down that route.

Shay Given speaking to Rams TV:

“Being a goalkeeping coach speaks for itself, you look after the goalkeepers and when Wayne took over, he asked me to change roles and have more responsibility with the guys in the team in general, which I have enjoyed.

“I always saw my long-term plan, if you like, to be more as a coach or an assistant and getting involved with outfield players as well. I am happy to be involved with the outfield players, team selection and set plays and just enjoying working with all the players rather than just three or four of the goalkeepers. It is a nice change for me.

“Frank Lampard gave me the opportunity to be the goalkeeping coach and I was really happy to come to a great club like Derby County, so that was great for me. The next step for me now is coaching the outfield players and having a little more input than before as well, helping the gaffer with selection and different things, and just giving your ideas on certain players and systems.

“Wayne has the final decision, and rightly so, and the rest of us are just there to try and support him and help the best we can.

 “We have got a good mix on the staff. Wayne [Rooney] is a former striker; Liam [Rosenior] is an ex-defender and Justin [Walker] played in midfield. With me as an ex-goalkeeper, we have the full spine of the team.

“I think when you have different people who played different positions, they do see the game differently. Wayne has brought in people he can trust and knows different positions and different personalities as well within the coaching staff which I think helps as well.

“It has worked really well, and it is easy to say that after the run of form we’ve been on recently. The group we have got, together with the staff and players, have to buy into the ideas and what we are doing and they’ve done that. They have been brilliant.

“All the players have really bought into how we want to train and how we want to play. We might get some bad days at the office, which is part and parcel of football, but the lads have been brilliant.”

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