Who could not forget Ryan Taylor’s winning freekick against Sunderland in Newcastle’s second fixture of the 2011-2012 Premier League season?
Lining the ball up on enemy territory at the Stadium of Light in August, the Liverpudlian calmly stepped up to curl a freekick over the wall and into the back of the net and has since seen his name go down in Geordie folklore and has even earned himself his own little song which reverberates around the ground every time he step up to take a set piece.
On THAT goal, Ryan Taylor said “I’d put it number one, I’ve had some great memories in football but that ranks right up there, I can’t wait to go again!”
The Scouser has been reliving the moment and spoke of Sunday’s fixture against Sunderland at St James’ Park. Newcastle have fared the best in Tyne-Wear derbies on home turf with the last Sunderland win coming in 2000.
This time Newcastle face a new manager at the helm, that of Martin O’Neil who has somewhat rejuvenated his side since taking the reigns over from former Geordie, Steve Bruce.
Taylor added “We can say, a few of our boys over the past few years have played in more derbies than theirs. When we played them this season I think they had 10 new players, so they wouldn’t have known too much about it. I’m sure Martin will have them ready, tell them what it means to fans but there’s only one team I want to win on Sunday and I’m sure that the other lads feel that way too.”
Taylor’s clearly very focussed on gaining a result against the team’s fierce rivals and that is evident with the way he has spoken. There is no illusion that they are taking this fixture lightly and understand that they need to be at the top of their game in order to gain a victory.
The derby game is a sell-out which ensures that the atmosphere in the stadium will be one of the best that Newcastle have had during this tremendous season.
Taylor spoke of the crowd coming to the match by adding “I’m sure they’ll get there extra early on Sunday, from Saturday night I’m sure there’ll be a few who go out that might not even go to sleep. All we can ask is that they get behind the lads, hopefully we can produce and get the three points that everyone in that stadium other that the little section at the top wants, and hopefully it’s a black and white day.”
Ryan Taylor has clearly learnt how important the derby is to Newcastle fans and that will be the main focus of gaining a victory for the fans. He is hoping to repeat his heroics on Sunday and finally commented “I’d love to be the one who did it again on Sunday. Come Saturday night, when I’m lying there ready to go to sleep I’ll be dreaming of doing it again.”
Sunday can’t come soon enough for Ryan Taylor and who knows if he produces another wonderous freekick like he did at the Stadium of Light he will further cement his place in Geordie folklore.