Steve Bruce has revealed that NUFC’s Mr Reliable Isaac Hayden had been bed-bound with COVID-19 over the past fortnight – making his man of the match display in yesterday’s 2-1 win over West Brom all the more impressive!
Hayden missed our win against Crystal Palace two weeks ago but returned in a unfamiliar role at centre-back and put in a stellar performance.
As ever, his dependability proved vital as he put in a solid defensive display alongside Ciaran Clark to keep the Baggies blunt in attack.
In his post-match press conference, Bruce also hailed everybody involved at the club for the efforts made over the last fortnight, with what the manager has described as a ‘challenging’ couple of weeks.
Here is what he said in full after the win:
“Isaac has revealed now that he was one [that tested positive for Covid-19] and was in bed for ten days.
“Inevitably I was checking those players who had the virus.
“Yes, you can test negative but the fatigue people are having is the big thing.”
“It knocked him to hell
“I can’t give enough credit to the players and staff who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes over the last couple of weeks.
“It’s been a really challenging ten days or so, so I’m delighted for everybody concerned.”
The biggest compliment I can pay Hayden is that when I saw the lineup an hour before kick-off and noticed he was playing in central defence, it didn’t concern me at all.
It has been over four years since he signed for us in the summer of 2016 and it’s fair to say he’s rarely let us down.
Him and his partner today, Ciaran Clark, are two of the most undervalued members of our squad who rarely put a foot wrong when asked to represent the shirt.
As supporters, that is all that we ask for from our players.