Eddie Howe wants to help rebuild Newcastle on and off the pitch

The 44-year-old led former club Bournemouth from League Two to the top flight.

By Press Association Published: 16 April 2022 - 9.30pm

Newcastle boss Eddie Howe wants to rebuild Newcastle off the pitch as well as on it as he plots a path to lasting success.

The Magpies have high hopes for the future under their new, wealthy owners but Financial Fair Play rules and the need to invest in the club’s infrastructure as well as the team mean that process will take time.

Howe and his players head into Sunday’s clash with Leicester, who won the Premier League title against all odds in 2016 and have built gradually since, still fighting for their top flight lives, but taking a long-term view.

The 44-year-old head coach said: “We have to build the club in conjunction with the team. I don’t think it’s a case that you can just build the team and not include the infrastructure in that, so we have a lot of work to do.”

Under previous owner Mike Ashley, whose investment in the club was comparatively modest, there were plans to redevelop the club’s Benton training headquarters and bolster the academy, which ultimately never came to fruition.

Howe oversaw a similar process as he led former club Bournemouth from League Two to the top flight, and he admits there are parallels to be drawn.

He said: “At Bournemouth, we came from League Two to the Premier League where naturally we had a lot to change.

“When you attract players in the Premier League and you’re signing players at that level, you can’t not offer them the right surroundings and the right day-to-day environment for them to perform at their best at the level you’re playing at.

“Now, here we have good facilities, but I think there’s a need to take things on a step and that’s certainly in everyone’s minds.”

The Saudi investment in Newcastle has left fans dreaming of the days not so very long ago under both Kevin Keegan and Sir Bobby Robson when they threatened the Premier League’s established order, something Leicester famously took a step further six years ago.

However, it is what they have done since which has impressed Howe.

He said: “When they won the league, I don’t think anyone saw that coming and it was an incredible moment in the recent history of the Premier League.

“But they have backed that up as well. They haven’t fallen away from that, obviously what they’re doing in Europe this year and their consistency in the league. Full credit to them.”

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