After two consecutive loan spells away from St James’ Park, it would be easy to forget that Jacob Murphy is still on our books and a Newcastle United player.
He completed a £12 move to Tyneside as a promising England U-21 international back in 2017, but his career at the club is now in doubt after a difficult three years.
In a brilliant in-depth interview with the Chronicle, Murphy has revealed his plans to impress Steve Bruce when he returns from a loan spell with Sheffield Wednesday this summer – vowing to ‘never give up on that dream of being a regular at Newcastle’.
Here’s what he’s had to say, starting with his desire to turns things around on Tyneside:
“My future is not on my mind at the moment.
“I’m enjoying my football at Wednesday, I’ve still got some targets I want to reach with the club here.
“I’m going to do everything in my power to try and achieve that, and then hopefully go into the summer with the fire in the belly.
“Hopefully an opportunity comes up where I can impress Steve Bruce and show him I can play for the football club.
“I will never give up on that dream of being a regular at Newcastle.”
“All the time I had the black and white shirt on, I loved it.
“I can’t wait to get back into that strip.”
After largely underwhelming loan stints at West Brom and Wednesday, he’s got a long way to go to be competing with the likes of Saint-Maximin and Almiron for a spot in Steve Bruce’s starting 11 – yet he’s clearly not willing to give up, suggesting this summer’s pre-season could be a huge one for him.
Murphy – who’s now no longer a ‘young talent’ at 25 – then opened up about his poor form on Tyneside, believing the ‘£12m price tag’ and his lack of regular game time held him back:
“It was the biggest fee paid in quite some time at Newcastle. There was an expectation on me.
“It did make things a bit harder but looking back on it, two and bit years on, I’m a lot wiser and I’m not reading into the price tag anymore.
“You see now everything is very expensive these days, there’s nothing I can do about the price tag.
“It’s one of them things you can’t control, it’s between clubs and what they want to do.”
“It is hard when you haven’t got the minutes to try and produce what you know you’re capable of. You need that little bit longer in the team.
“That didn’t happen but that’s how it goes in football.”
The former Norwich star then opened up about his low confidence levels in recent seasons, saying he was doubting himself ‘a lot’ at one stage.
That said, he feels he’s now rediscovered that inner self belief, saying he’s ‘fearless’ again and ‘hungry to succeed’ ahead of his return to Newcastle this summer:
“You end up questioning and doubting yourself a lot. Looking back, I shouldn’t have doubted myself.
“The talent and capability has always been there, it’s just having that self-belief.
“Since this loan and with the help of my team-mates and Garry Monk, I’ve rediscovered that.”
“I wanted to regain the confidence and get back to my old self.
“Being confident on the ball and being fearless, I think I’ve really done that. It’s given me a platform to get back out there and enjoy my football
“I’m really happy the time I’ve spent so far at Sheffield Wednesday getting minutes under my belt, regaining that confidence, and getting back to the Jacob Murphy that got bought by Newcastle.
“I’m just hungry to succeed.”
I have my doubts about Murphy, feeling he looks like a dear in the headlights too often and also lack that bit of quality in his final ball, but it’s great to hear a player refusing to give up on their Newcastle United ‘dream.
Hopefully he proves us all wrong and comes back a player reborn this summer!