Steve Bruce has revealed that Isaac Hayden had been tipped to excel as a centre half, NOT a midfielder, while working together at Hull.
The gaffer signed Hayden on loan from Arsenal during the 2015-16 season and his impressive displays ultimately led to Rafa Benitez bringing the player to Tyneside ahead of our Championship campaign.
The midfielder has had to fill in at the back in recent times due to a growing injury list, and Bruce has told how his chief scout at Hull actually thought it was his best position to begin with.
Here is what Bruce said to the press following our dramatic 3-2 win against Southampton:
“When he was a kid he played at centre-back for Arsenal.
“I remember when I took him to Hull my chief scout thought his best position was centre-back.
“When he produces a performance like that you can see why. It’s good to have.”
Hayden’s versatility has seen him play in midfield, at centre half and even at right back this season, as he has worked his way from unsung hero to one of the first names on the team sheet in the eyes of supporters.
His block on the line yesterday epitomised our gutsy performance and we should feel thankful that he now settled in the North East and looks set to stay here for the long haul.
It certainly doesn’t concern me when I see Hayden in the backline and that is probably the biggest praise you could give him. A hard-working, brave “steady Eddie” who works for the team and will do any role asked of him makes him an integral part of this Newcastle squad.