Callum Wilson praises 'perfect' Newcastle United decision made by owners
It took Callum Wilson just two minutes to open his account on a new era for Newcastle United.
One year ago this week, Newcastle were subject to a long-awaited takeover led by the Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund.
In just 12 months, United have gone from prime relegation candidates to a side who look capable of competing at the right end of the Premier League table.
£210million worth of investment in the first-team squad has helped in that regard, but one player who has remained crucial to the side amid all of the fresh faces is Wilson.
"Well it's gone quick,” admitted the Newcastle No. 9. “It feels like yesterday when the takeover was happening. It's been a transition definitely.
"We've started to see better players coming in the door, more money being spent on players, better competition and I think it's important, it's healthy.
"The feel around the place has changed over the last year, it feels like the dark cloud has been lifted over the football club and I've always said this club was a sleeping giant and it feels like it's starting to wake now so it's a positive and we're going in the right direction.”
In Newcastle’s first game under new ownership against Tottenham Hotspur at St James’s Park, Wilson took just two minutes to find the back of the net with a trademark close-range finish.
The Magpies ended up losing the game 3-2 but it was a match that marked the start of a brighter future for the club.
While the takeover brought optimism and hope amongst supporters, it wasn’t until the appointment of Eddie Howe as the club’s new head coach when things finally started to turn around on the pitch for United.
“[The mindset has changed] definitely, because you know that the club have invested in the squad,” Wilson added.
"You look around and there are such talented players, you're confident with your team, with your starting line-up, with your subs that are coming on.
"There's competition now and everyone is on their toes and everyone is playing that extra 10, 15-per-cent more whereas before you could be thinking 'I'll start every week' and get complacent because it's just human nature to kind of relax, but that's not the case now.
"The manager has come in, the culture has changed, the philosophy has changed and yeah, I can only see positive things coming from this.”
There were some doubts over Howe’s appointment at Newcastle at the time given his previous job in management saw him relegated with Bournemouth.
But Wilson was always confident in his head coach.
“I had full faith in him coming here and making an impact,” he continued. “I've worked with him previously for six, seven years and I know his work ethic is second to none and that filters down through the football club.
"When the takeover happened, he was the perfect man for the job because you could go foreign and all of a sudden you're not getting the best out of your current English players because we did have a strong English core to start with.
"This manager has handled it, taken to it like a duck to water and now we're seeing the results and I don't think anyone is better suited for the job.”