Rob Lee has revealed that Kevin Keegan’s only philosophy as a manager was to ‘entertain the fans’ as reports suggest the former Magpies boss will return to St James’ Park.
Mike Ashley is set to end his unpopular 13-year ownership of the Tyneside club, with the Sports Direct retail tycoon poised to sell to Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund.
The £300m deal looks set to transform the Magpies into one of the wealthiest clubs in world football.
And amid the imminent takeover speculation has inevitably begun to swirl about which players – and even managers – could be on their way to the club.
Big-money moves for global superstars such as Kylian Mbappe and Philippe Coutinho have been mooted, while Mauricio Pochettino, Massimiliano Allegri and Rafael Benitez have all been touted as possible candidates to replace incumbent Steve Bruce as Magpies manager.
And, according to the Mirror, the takeover could also see Keegan return to St James’ Park in an ambassadorial role.
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The 69-year-old is an iconic figure among Newcastle fans, having steered the Magpies back into the top-flight and almost to the Premier League title in the 1995/96 season – where his ‘Entertainers’ were agonisingly pipped to the crown by Manchester United.
He then sealed a shock return to the club in 2008, but it was an ill-fated appointment which was cut short after only eight months after a disastrous run of results.
And Lee, who made over 300 Premier League appearances for the Magpies from 1992-2002, has revealed that Keegan had a special philosophy focused solely on entertaining supporters.
“He had a great affiliation to the Newcastle fans,” Lee told talkSPORT. “He always wanted to entertain them. He always thought the crowd was a fantastic crowd and he wanted to give them a football team they could be proud of – and I think he did that.
“All he wanted was for the fans to be entertained and for people to come up to him and say, ‘watching the team is fantastic’ – and not just not Newcastle fans.
“Other fans from other teams still come up to me now and say they loved the way we played.”
Lee added: “From the minute I got there in 1992, all Kevin used to say was ‘go out there and entertain the crowd’.
“There was very little on tactics; he would just buy good players and let them play.
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The quicker we work together to stop coronavirus spreading, the sooner we can get back into the pub, the gyms and stadiums and arenas to see live sport again…
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“There were very, very few team talks, we never went over the opposition and rarely did corners and free kicks.
“You know when you are a kid and you played football down the park – that’s how we used to play.
“From some of the games we played it was like a schoolboy’s game; they attack, we attack, they attack, we attack. We would score a lot of goals, let a lot in, but that was Kevin Keegan.”
Watch a clip of Rob Lee on talkSPORT, above…