After signing a long term deal to join Newcastle United in 2014, with the goal of eventually playing Champions League football with the club, Siem De Jong has officially been sold back to Dutch club Ajax for roughly £4million pounds.
De Jong made just 26 appearances for Newcastle, mostly as a sub. He was then sent on loan last season to Ajax’s rivals PSV Eindhoven where he made 23 appearances.
De Jong’s goal of being a player to propel NUFC to Champion’s League football was never accomplished, and instead the team was relegated to the Championship in his second season. He did however leave his mark on the club, going down in the club’s history as a player who remained injured. De Jong had this awful reputation but it is important to note that a lot of his injuries were freak accidents that could not have been prevented. Two collapsed lungs, and a bizarre eye injury caused by Emmanuel Riviere. The Shields Gazette had an interview with them and he had this to say about his freak injuries.
“If you look at the three big injuries I’ve had – two collapsed lungs and my eye – they’ve had nothing to do with football,” said de Jong. “Apart from that, I’ve had one big injury and one operation, and muscle injuries, but that happens to all players. For me, sometimes, it’s difficult to explain. I’m trying to keep fit, but those injuries weren’t up to me to prevent.”
His eye injury was such a freak accident that it is impossible to fault him for that. It should have been an early indicator to get rid of Riviere, but alas he just got sold this past week. De Jong had this to say about his eye accident
“It was in training. I was stood behind (Emmanuel) Riviere and he wanted to turn. He tried to hold me back and his finger went straight in my eye, the full force. I was concerned I would lose my sight, especially on that first day. After a few hours I got a little bit of blurred vision back. But the first day it was scary. If you can’t see with one eye, you can’t play. Eventually, you would get used to it and you would be able to do almost everything, but I don’t think it would have helped my football.”
Nonetheless in the eyes (get it?) of many Newcastle fans he was an injury prone attacking midfielder who never reached his potential with Newcastle. This is really unfortunate because the guy claims he did everything he could to prevent injuries, such as spending time in the gym and doing full warm-ups etc.
De Jong is looking to revitalize his career with this return to the Netherlands, this is something his brother Luuk did after a failed spell with Borussia Mönchengladbach. Luuk of course had a brief loan spell with NUFC in 2014. Since Luuk has returned to the Netherlands he has been considered one of the better players in the league and has positioned himself to be an option for the World Cup squad. It is safe to assume that Siem will try to replicate what his brother has done in order to secure a spot in the Dutch World Cup squad.
It is sad to Siem go, especially because he has flashed signs of his former brilliance this preseason. But, we here at Coming Home Newcastle wish him nothing but the best in his future endeavors.