St James’ Park is once again becoming a fortress with the atmosphere created by the Toon Army making it a nightmare for Newcastle United’s opponents to play in.

Under Kevin Keegan and up until the Sir Bobby Robson era St James’ Park was a wall of noise, a hostile atmosphere for opposition clubs that would often push the Newcastle players on to victory.

As the hope and belief in the club died away under the dark days of Mike Ashley as the soul was sucked out of the club. Newcastle fans lost a lot of that energy and as a result, St James’ Park wasn’t as much of a daunting prospect.

There are fans now that are only just learning the power of SJP

There is now a generation of fans who only knew our crowds for those times and are only just now experiencing why our ground is so highly thought of in the footballing world.

In the 1990’s and 2000’s Newcastle were still seen as a powerhouse in the Premier League and even one of the best players in the World at the time, Marcel Desailly, has admitted that it was an intimidating place to play.

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Desailly played for Chelsea from 1998-2004 and was widely regarded as one of the best defenders in the World, as he was part of the France side that won the World Cup in 1998 followed by the Euros in 2000, later going on to become the captain of the national side and once holding the honour of France’s most capped player.

France legend Desailly chose St James’ Park as his favourite PL stadium

In a recent interview on SuperSport, (via their official TikTok), Desailly was asked which was his favourite Premier League ground to play at to which he replied without hesitation: “St James’ Park, yes. I like this stadium, Newcastle. Quite scary at the time they were having a good crowd, good fans.”

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Marcel Desailly was one of those players I always wished Newcastle would have signed. He was a tank and had a reputation for being hard as nails, so for him to say that St James’ Park was a scary place is high praise indeed.

Thanks to the takeover and the installation of a bit of belief, along with the superb efforts from Wor Flags, St James’ Park is once again a terrifying place for teams to come and try and get a result. Maybe Desailly should make the trip to Newcastle again and compare.

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