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Christian on the cover for Clarets clash

Written by Tom Easterby

Newcastle United winger Christian Atsu is the focus of Wednesday’s official matchday programme for the visit of Burnley (7.45pm kick-off).

The Magpies take on Sean Dyche’s side at St. James’ Park and Ghanaian international Atsu’s image adorns the front cover, with an in-depth, ten-page interview inside.

Supporters who follows the 26-year-old on social media will know that Christianity is an important part of Atsu’s make-up, and the former Porto man took UNITED to Hillsong church’s Newcastle campus for this week’s Big Interview.

In it, he opens up about his challenging childhood in his homeland and the way in which his beliefs and relationship with religion developed throughout his life.

The father of two also discusses family and football, in particular his desire to realise his potential at United after tough spells with Chelsea, Everton and Bournemouth.

“I’d say I’m trying, I’m trying. It’s not easy. I know for sure I will be better. I’m trying to work hard for the team and forget proving myself – there’s no need in proving myself in the English league,” Atsu told UNITED.

“Honestly, I’ve enjoyed my football here, with the coaches, friendships with my colleagues. I’ve enjoyed it so much. The fans have given me great encouragement. I’m happy. With them there, we know we are fighting for something.

“I’m always confident. Sometimes I’m down, but mostly I’m confident in my life now. For me, I know there is more from me to give to these fans. I’m working hard for everything I have been given in football. I will bring everything out here in Newcastle.”

Wednesday's issue also includes a four-page interview with Geoff Nulty, who turned out for both the Magpies and Burnley during the 1960s and ‘70s.

There’s also a feature on Senior Business Development Executive Scott Nellins is the focus of our latest United Backstage piece. As well as outlining how he and his team look after the many hundreds of sponsors and box holders on a matchday, Scott tells us about his own sporting exploits, having represented England at fly fishing on multiple occasions.

Meanwhile, in Gems in the Attic, Club Historian Paul Joannou unearths a range of stickers with a United connection, including some of the very first. There is also our usual archive programme feature, as well as a look back at Newcastle's famous win over Feyenoord in 2002.

To read all of this – and much more – pick up a copy of UNITED from around St. James’ Park or in the club store on Wednesday, priced at just £3.

"For me, I know there is more from me to give to these fans. I’m working hard for everything I have been given in football. I will bring everything out here in Newcastle."

Christian Atsu

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