EVERYONE loves a flamboyant frontman prepared to perform on the big stage to an adoring public.
And St James’s Park has seen it’s fair share of showmen over the years.
Freddie Mercury wowed the Newcastle audience with Queen back in 1986 when the football was still suffering from the abdication of King Kev two years earlier.
Fast forward to the 1990s and the entertainment was purely on the pitch, however.
David Ginola provided the artistry, Faustino Asprilla the cartwheels and Alan Shearer the fireworks in front of goal as Keegan returned as manager with a brand of football that lifted the Toon Army and entertained the nation.
And now Newcastle may just have a new showman in their ranks.
Step forward Yoan Gouffran, a striker with electric pace, a glint in his eye and – as he met the media yesterday after his move from Bordeaux – a pair of glittering gold trainers that even Mercury would have shied away from wearing.
Sat in the old home dressing room that had housed Keegan’s Entertainers once upon a time, the 26-year-old was more than aware of the past great players whose footsteps he was following in.
And he was more than confident that he could get the Geordie public head over heels for him too, having opted to wear Asprilla’s old No11 jersey.
“David Ginola needs no introduction to me or to any French player,” Gouffran smiled.
“Alan Shearer was a fantastic player for England and Newcastle, who scored a lot of goals.
“I am well aware of the history of the club, and the players who have been here before me.
“Tino Asprilla is another, who I admired, who scored great goals.
“Now I have his number which is great for me.”
Having lost Demba Ba to Chelsea this month, Newcastle are looking for someone to take on his goalscoring mantle.
And Gouffran, who can operate across the frontline, is confident he can deliver.
“My main position is centre-forward, but I can play either side or off the striker,” he said. “I can definitely adapt my style.
“I am centre-forward, and I have proved I can score in France.
“It is different in the Premier League, but it is going to be up to me to make sure I go out on the pitch, and do everything I can with Newcastle.”
Having bagged 12 goals for Bordeaux already this season, Gouffran has every right to feel confident.
And now his new club will be hoping the man with the sparkling boots can find that goal-den touch at Newcastle.
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