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Exclusive: Steven Taylor explains unique Newcastle support amid Ashley protests

Newcastle United fans are renowned for being some of the most passionate and boisterous fans in England and are known for their tenacity and loyalty to the club. You don't have to look very far to realise how much they truly love their football.

Most recently, the relationship between Mike Ashley and Newcastle supporters has grown to a new level of animosity, as the Geordie faithful continue to protest Ashley's ownership ahead of matches hosted at St James' Park.

Former Magpies captain Steven Taylor has told Tribalfootball that it's not an easy feat playing in front of Newcastle's dedicated supporters. He says it takes a strong character to be a Toon player, and some just aren't cut out for the football-centralised mentality of day to day living.

"You need to be prepared mentally more than anything," said Taylor in an exclusive interview with Tribalfootball.

"I was in the dressing room with top class European players who just couldn't handle the scrutiny of St James'. If you didn't give 100%, you would hear about it and the fans would give it to you. If you didn't like it, there was the door.

"Over the years I had my odds with the fans over some of my performances as well, but I stuck around, I worked hard, and that's what they appreciate."

Taylor, now preparing for his first season in the A-League with Wellington Phoenix, also revealed that Newcastle has a unique footballing culture like no other, with some dedicating their entire lives to football.

"I've been to some magnificent stadiums in my career, but nothing compares to the North East, Newcastle is a city that eats, drinks and sleeps football. If you lose a game, it's the stuff that could cause divorces. You get drilled at an early age how important it is, especially the derby games. Without a doubt they're the toughest supporters to play in front of."

About the author

Chris Sermeno

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