Cabaye on Newcastle: “people there live for football”

Posted on August 3rd, 2011 | 17 Comments |

Yohan Cabaye interview
Settling in well
Newcastle United new boy Yohan Cabaye talks about his first impressions of the club, how hard it was to leave Lille and life in England in general.

This interview appeared on Lille FC’s site and all I’ve done is to transcribe it and do my best to correct some dodgy Franglaise returned by Google Translate.


Yohan, good morning. We are pleased to hear from you. How are you adapting to life in England?

Very well, thank you. I was fortunate to quickly find a house when I first came for the medical examination. I was able to go on holiday with the peace of mind of knowing that. Everything is going well with the other players, I was welcomed nicely. Knowing that my English is not too good, they make the effort to speak slowly so I can understand. I’m starting to get my bearings.

What were your impressions on arriving in Newcastle?

There are some things you only understand when you arrive in Newcastle. People there live for football. Wherever you go, you wear the jersey of Newcastle. This is awesome! This club has a great reputation because it has a prestigious past. For example, for first friendly match against a team from the fifth division, there were 9000 people at the stadium with 6,000 fans Magpies.

Have you noticed the differences with the French football?

Yes, the intensity is different, especially in training. I notice that every day. French players must quickly get up to speed, otherwise you may suffer. The team has good players who want to monopolise possession at all costs. But I feel good, especially since there are many other Frogs in the group.

What is forthcoming?

We are on the back of a defeat against Leeds (3-2) and preparing for our next match on Saturday when we play Fiorentina in our last friendly. The Premier League starts on August 13 with Arsenal at St James’ Park. Then we play the derby at Sunderland. The fans keep saying you can lose anything except that game, much like the LOSC-RC Lens. The atmosphere is something crazy!

What is the first memory that comes back to you in mind when you’re talking about the LOSC?

There are so many. I would say my first match against Istres at Nimes (0-2 win, 7 November 2004), because that is where it all began for me as a professional. I was launched into the deep end. This was the first step to getting me where I am today.

What are the high points of your seven seasons with Lille?

The two titles, obviously. As a footballer there is nothing more rewarding. That memory will stay with me forever. In 20 years, we know that fans will still talk about this the 2010-2011 Lille team. These are things that not be forgotten.

Have you felt a tug at your heart when leaving the LOSC?

I’ll be honest, it was hard, especially in the final against Rennes (3-2). I felt great emotion at the time of my departure, what with getting the trophy and the victory lap. I said, “that’s it, it’s all over!” But such is football. A player sometimes requires change to evolve and grow. In England, I will discover another culture, another life.

Finally, have you a word for the Lille fans?

I thank you very much from the heart. They have always been exceptional and I was very proud to have been able to win these titles with the team for them. I sincerely hope that Lille will continue to have good time. Whatever happens, I will remain a supporter of the LOSC. This is my club, that will never change. I have also subscribed to the French channels to watch the upcoming season.

NUFCBlog Author: Hugh de Payen I'm a baby-boomer of the punk rock persuasion, currently exiled in Somerset for crimes committed in a previous life where locals keep trying to poison me with something called 'scrumpy'. Hates sprouts, coat-hangers, Cilla Black, ornaments, Steven Seagull movies and 50 Cent (he's not worth 10). Hugh de Payen has written 634 articles on this blog.

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17 Responses

  1. Could be playing in the championship season after next :lol:

    He must be thinking what the hell have I let myself in for already…must look like a proper mess especially for the new players.

  2. The likes of Barton and Jose should be thinking of the effect they are having on the new players if they cared that much.

    Nice to hear Cabaye seems to have taken to the club regardless of the bother

  3. looks a decent player cabaye,i was impressed with his defensive capabilities against leeds.i just seen on another blog about a swap deal for enrique to liverpool plus a player.i hope to god they do not try to palm us off with that useless f**ker david ngog.this will really put the icing on the cake if these back alley guttersnipes,were to bring him in.

  4. Nice to hear Cabaye seems to have taken to the club regardless of the bother……I agree and does anyone else wonder why it’s only been 3 or 4 players making all the noise?? 3or 4 who in my opinion are/were great players but still only average compared to the really top players of Europe. Now I know the likes of Messi etc are on 4&5 times the money these guys are on but they’re still not exactly paupers and I just wonder if there’s not two sides to this argument and greedy players and agents are every bit as culpable as greedy owners ! Enrique claims lack of ambition by the club but if reports are to be believed he’s prepared to go to Liverpool…thought he wanted CL????? Nolan moves down a division and god knows where Barton will end up….I tink the lack of ambition extends down onto the playing surface where after all this is where real success can be achieved….I’ve yet to see a club chairman score the winning goal in CL final!!!!!

  5. TROJAN 69 says:
    August 3, 2011 at 10:35 am

    “looks a decent player cabaye,i was impressed with his defensive capabilities against leeds”

    That’s what Pardew said, keeping with the pessimistic atmosphere, does that mean if Tiote is sold, we have a replacement in Cabaye? :-)

    Agree with post 1, he must be thinking “what have I done”. You wont be playing in Europe mate, I’m sure that is what he was told the ‘plan’ was for this season.

  6. Did Cabaye really use the terms ‘frogs’ when referring to the other French lads at the club, or were you paraphrasing?

  7. Clint, I just noticed that. I don’t think the French do refer to themselves in that way usually. :-)

  8. good stuff

    i think the fans are overreacting to the whole situation
    barton and enrique leaving isnt the end of the world and as long as we replace them they will become yesterdays news

    sounds like cabaye is looking on the brighter side of life and in the grand scheme of things players coming and going is normal in football he has just done the same at his old club so he could hardley complain. lets see where we stand come the close of the window

    what i would like to see is a ban on social media at the club as its embarrassing seeing this squabbling going public

  9. I disagree players should have the right to voice opinions if they don’t like what is going on.
    Fair play to Jose,Nolan and Barton they have woken up a few MA lovers along the way and I think most agree now that all is not well at the Club.

  10. Geordiedug,
    aye mate, bang on.

    Players do have the right to moan, or whatever, but their employers have the right to sanction them.
    Same the world over.
    6 & 2 3’s.

  11. I was rather hoping that that a certain someone wouldn’t be getting a mention on threads anymore, I for one am sick of seeing his name. Seems to have monopolised most of the blogs for the past few years and we certainly aint had a good return for all of the air time and exposure he’s had. Can we not now have a moratorium on him and not give him any more of the attention he rather sadly seems to crave.

    On the Jose Lpool thing some one mentioned Insua as a good make weight in the deal, I would agree with that option. Don’t want N’Gog or for that matter Aghbonlahar (AV) neither are as good as Shola imo.

    Is Wendell the French (playing) left sided defender still around, worth a look AP’s blog watchers please note and report, or Mr Carr even!

    As I’ve said many times selling Routledge is a mistake we might come to rue, he wasn’t a “troublemaker” was he.
    Again H2O under the bridge!

  12. And, by the way, Cabye does appear to be one good for the future, just hope it’s the Toons future. :(

  13. @ sirjasontoon

    but what have they achieved other than make us look even more stupid in the public eye?

    barton would have be in the squad and would have played for us this season until he tweeted! he knew it was going to cause a s@#t storm and we certainly haven’t benefited from it as fans! he left the club with no other choice than to get rid!

    im no mike ashley lover by a long stretch the man is a complete b@~erd but i dont need players who ultimately play for the club and get paid handsomely for it moaning every detail on twitter! its embarrassing!

    there is alot of stuff i dont like at my work but i dont tweet every detail of it! 1. because its unprofessional 2.because i would loose my job if my employer seen it! seems fair to me!

    there are still alot of players at the club who are quite happy to be there and want to play well this season so all these outbursts do is bring negativity and cast a shadow on the good things happening like cabaye saying hes happy!

    at least enrique had the decency to accept his fine and close his account knowing it wasnt the way to do things

  14. Sirjason@10

    I agree but privately & in a professional manner that doesn’t undermine the club, the players & most of all the fans. I think barton has failed on all counts…

  15. letting jose go and replacing him with liverpools 4th choice lb is not a bright thing to do we cannot afford to let the players go who have passion and commitment and replace them with potential like cabaye and co they should be in addition to barton nolan and jose no barton and nolan equals no heart or passionhope i am wrong but a long season ahead thanks to the fat controller and the cockney mafia