'Another level' - Newcastle first teamer names ex-Tottenham star as inspiration
By Russell Edge
Newcastle United defender DeAndre Yedlin has said that he looked to model himself on former Tottenham star Kyle Walker during their time in North London together.
The American international joined Spurs from MLS side Seattle Sounders back in 2014, spending three seasons contracted to the club before moving to Newcastle in the summer of 2016.
The 24-year-old right-back made just one appearance for the North London side, coming off the bench against Aston Villa, instead spending time on loan at his former side Seattle and the Magpies’ north east rivals Sunderland.
However he insists that his time at Spurs was beneficial to his development, and revealed that he had used their-then star Walker, a fellow right-back, as both inspiration and a role model.
Speaking to the Chronicle, Yedlin said: “Every day in training I tried to absorb what I can from him (Walker).
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“Just watching him, watching how he plays, watching where he is positionally, watching when he gets forward.”
Walker followed in his former teammate’s footsteps in leaving Tottenham, becoming the world’s most expensive defender after joining Manchester City in a reported £50million deal.
Yedlin, who has picked up 46 caps for the USA since his debut in 2014, also paid credit to current boss Rafael Benitez for helping him become the best player he can be.
“Working with Rafa has taken my game to another level,” he told the Chronicle
“It’s a very physical league. It’s a league that if you lose focus for even a little bit of time, they can punish you.”
Since arriving at St James’ Park, Yedlin has made 35 appearances for the club, scoring once and laying on six assists for his team mates.
He missed the start of the Magpies’ return to the Premier League through injury but having recovered has reestablished himself in the starting XI, with three appearances this season.
In other Newcastle United news, Football Insider has named the starting XI who would destroy Southampton in the club’s next league clash.