Jeff Hendrick hasn’t had to wait long before coming up against his former teammates.
Newcastle host Burnley on Saturday evening and Jeff Hendrick can’t wait to face his former club for the first time.
Hendrick left Burnley after four years in the summer after failing to agree new terms with the Clarets, while Newcastle didn’t hesitate to identify the Irish international as a top target amid interest from AC Milan.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Hendrick told Newcastle’s website.
“It’s the first time I’ve faced a former team. I’ve got some good friends there and I want to beat them.”
Hendrick, who scored on his debut for the Magpies, is unsure how Burnley supporters would respond to the sight of him on an opposing side.
But with fans not allowed in stadiums due to Covid-19 regulations, Hendrick won’t have that particular worry on Saturday.
“It could have gone either way,” Hendrick said when asked what kind of reaction he’d get from Burnley supporters. “Hopefully it would have been a nice one.
“I had four good years there and we did some great things over the four years so I would like to think it would have been nice.
“If there are fans in for the return fixture then we’ll see.”
Ahead of this weekend’s game, Burnley manager Sean Dyche has expressed regret over the way that Hendrick left the club as a free agent upon the expiry of his contract at Turf Moor.
“It was a situation I felt could have been avoided,” Dyche said of Hendrick’s departure.
“But that’s the way it goes, I am used to managing situations here.
“He’s a good player and was a fantastic professional here. He had question marks from fans, but sometimes that was unfair because we played him in all different positions.”