Ten Years Of Tim
Written by Newcastle Utd
Tim Krul sat down with nufc.co.uk to talk about a decade of service to Newcastle United
By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Managing Editor
Sunday, 17th July, marked ten years as a Newcastle United player for goalkeeper Tim Krul.
The Dutch stopper arrived at the Magpies Academy as a fresh-faced 17-year-old and over the last decade has gone on to establish himself not only as number one at St. James' Park but also a regular in the Netherlands national squad.
It has been quite a journey for Krul and such service and commitment is a rarity in the modern game. But the Hague-born ace sees no reason why he can't make it 20 years as a United player.
"Ten years is something to be really proud of," he told nufc.co.uk.
"I don't think it's the sort of thing you will see too often in the game nowadays.
"It doesn't feel real that it's been this long. There have been some amazing highs, and some lows as well, but that is normal in football and all those experiences have shaped me into the person and the goalkeeper I am now.
"It's been an honour to play for such a fantastic club for that long, it's been a massive part of my life, and Newcastle United is like a second family to me.
"It's a great club to play for and the fan-base is huge - you can see that not only at St. James' Park in front of 52,000 people but also by coming out here to America on pre-season.
"I love this Club, and (could I stay 20 years?) I can't see why not."
Krul is honest enough to admit that when he first arrived from Holland, succeeding as he has done was beyond his wildest dreams.
A famous debut at Palermo in the UEFA Cup (pictured above) brought the young goalkeeper to the attention of the footballing world, before his development continued with a couple of loan spells away from Tyneside.
And by his own admission they were pivotal moments in his career.
"I first came here on a three-year contract and the idea was that we would see how things go, and if it didn't work out I would only be 20 and could go back to Holland," he revealed.
"But here I am - 27 and still here. Things worked out better than any of us could have imagined and I couldn't have dreamt of being where I am now.
"I was homesick in the early days. That is normal as a teenager when you are leaving everything behind.
"But Newcastle were always great and let me go back home for weeks now and then. Friends and family also came over, and it's such a friendly city that settling in wasn't too difficult.
"I got my debut at 18 in Palermo but never expected it to come that early. However, it set me up nicely and was just a taster of the things to come playing at this Club.
"I played that one game and it made me want more and more, and that night in Palermo pushed me on and reminded me why I came to Newcastle.
"The loans I had were very important, too. They were great times which shaped me as a young man.
"I went to Edinburgh to play for Falkirk, lived there on my own for the first time, and experienced men's football, which was really important for me at that stage of my development.
"I then got a loan to Carlisle for two months and played nine games which really helped me kick on in my career."
Krul left for those loan spells as a boy, and returned a man.
From there, his rise was swift and just three years after his time at Carlisle, he was handed the number one spot at St. James' Park by then-boss Alan Pardew.
"Being Newcastle's number one was always my goal and I finally got the chance in that great season when we finished fifth and went 11 games unbeaten at the start of the season," he continued.
"That was my moment and it is still an amazing feeling to be number one at such a great club.
"There have been so many highlights. All my debuts - Palermo, my first game in the Championship coming on for Harps at West Brom, my first start at QPR in the final game of the Championship season.
"Also playing against Edwin van der Sar - my hero - finishing fifth, reaching the Europa League quarter-final and beating Sunderland 5-1.
"There have been so many proud moments and I know there will be many more to come."