Eddie Howe was applauded for his level-headed reaction midweek against Paris Saint-Germain, but that hasn’t always been the case.
The Newcastle manager, who has exceeded expectations by guiding the club into the Champions League last season, is perhaps unique among his peers.
That’s mainly for standing out as an English coach that could well end up being elite, but also for his ability to keep things on an even keel, whether in a press conference or on the touchline.
Midweek, in a game that could define their season, Newcastle were a goal up against PSG and about to notch their second victory in this season’s Champions League, one that would transform their campaign.
Instead, Kylian Mbappe equalised from the penalty spot in the eighth minute of stoppage time, leaving the Magpies on the brink of elimination.
That far from tells the whole story though, with the handball that earned the spot-kick so controversial that the VAR who recommended a check was stood down for the following day’s action.
Howe managed to bite his lip post-match despite even rival fans and pundits raging about the call, and it was a skill brought up to the former long-time Bournemouth coach ahead of his side’s clash with Manchester United.
However, it’s not something that’s always been greeted well, as Howe found out in rather brutal terms.
“I’ve also had criticism for it the other way,” he explained.
“I remember someone telling me, ‘Unless you’re more demonstrative on the bench you’ll never manage in the Premier League’.
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“That was really early in my management career and I said I’m not going to change who I am, I’m not going to become someone else because that’s what I need to do, I can only be myself otherwise I’m going to turn into an act.
“It’s been used negatively against me and I’m sure other people have a different viewpoint on whether it’s a strength or a weakness but it’s not trying to prove any point, I can only be myself.”
Despite Newcastle’s Champions League hopes hanging by a thread, needing PSG to drop points away to bottom-of-the-group AC Milan, they could well be in for a huge boost in the Premier League.
Hammering Chelsea 4-1 at home last time out in one of their best displays of the season, up next is old foes Manchester United, who could well feel the wrath of an aggrieved St James’ Park.