Bakinson interview

Newport County AFC’s new loan signing – Tyreeq Bakinson – feels he has found the correct environment at Rodney Parade that will help force his way back into the Bristol City side upon his return to the club.

The 6’1” midfielder put pen to paper on a loan deal until January earlier today, meaning Bakinson will stay with the Exiles initially for the first five months of the 2018/19 campaign.

The 19-year old joins the club having experienced life in League Two before, making a couple of appearances for Luton Town in past seasons.

He has also made his competitive debut for parent club Bristol City, coming on as a second-half substitute in their emphatic 4-1 home triumph against Premier League outfit Crystal Palace in the Carabao Cup.

Since then, Bakinson has featured against the Exiles in the 2-2 draw with Bristol City earlier this month, before featuring in other matches for County against Swansea City, Hereford FC and Stoke City U23s.

Here, read what Bakinson exclusively told iFollow Exiles about his pre-season exploits, the several reasons behind his decision to join the club and why he is looking to follow in the footsteps of a recent World Cup winner during his career.


On his decision to join Newport County AFC on loan until January…

“I really like the vision of this football club. They are always trying to improve on what they have done before and obviously, I spoke to the manager and I like how he wants to keep on improving.

“He’s put together a great squad and I obviously spoke to Shawn McCoulsky - who was here last season - and he had nothing but good things to say about the club.

“You can hear the passion in Michael Flynn’s voice whenever he talks to you – its things like that that attract you because it’s things you want to hear as a young player.

“He has a really good relationship with his players and you can see that when you’re training and things like that – it’s just good to see.

“Myself and Michael [Flynn] are both midfielders so I can definitely learn a lot from him as a manager with his experience as a player.

“It’s all about learning for me and doing as well as I can for Newport County AFC. I spoke with Lee Johnson a little bit but it’s mostly now about what the Newport manager has to say.”


On what he is looking to bring to the club during his loan stint…

“I would like to think of myself as a box-to-box midfielder. I like to get around people, get on the ball so hopefully the fans will get to see a lot of that this season.

“For the fans, I would just say that we have a good group so we will do our best for the fans and for ourselves.

“I’d say more now, I look up to Paul Pogba quite a lot just because he has the same kind of stature as me. He plays like I would like to play so I would have to say Paul Pogba is a real inspiration.

“I feel like we both have the same athleticism, so I look up to him a lot. I need to add more goals into my game which is something he is doing now - it’s all about learning and improving really.

“I also looked up to Michael Essien - more so when I was younger - and when he was at Chelsea. I just feel like he was a really good player on and off the field.

“People will obviously say that what really matters is what happens on the pitch, but you also want to be a good person off the pitch as-well.

“It doesn’t always mean as much as on the field, but I feel like for me, that is just as important.”


On how pre-season went for the midfielder…

“What I saw [in the behind-closed-doors game against Bristol City] was that the team played the same style of football with both teams in the first and second halves.

“There was a real idea going around the club and I was really impressed with that.

“It definitely helped [playing in that game] with my decision to join the club. I was able to recognise a few faces and they were able to recognise me, so it was easy to get involved with the squad and feel at home.

“I thought it was a great experience at Rodney Parade [against Stoke City U23s.] The pitch was nice, it was my first opportunity to see the facilities so yeah, I was very impressed.

“Despite the result, I thought that game was a positive day. I feel like from a team base perspective, it gave us a chance to all get together – new players, old players - we were all able to speak to each other on the pitch, so it was a positive.

“I feel like I’ve had to deal with loads of weather [similar to the second-half] so it wasn’t that bad for me personally.

“In terms of the Swansea game, it was the kind of game that you wanted to play in. I was quite happy with my performance.

“Those games make it so much easier [heading into the league campaign.] It’s a lot easier when you can call your teammates by their nicknames and things like that.

“It makes the squad feel more together.”


On the integration within the squad…

“There’s a lot of leadership within the dressing room which I was quite impressed with. Usually, there’s only one or two leaders in a squad but there’s more than that here. Everyone is helping each other in a positive way so that’s good.

“Andrew Crofts being here was another reason that I chose to join. The manager told me about that when I was speaking to him and I think he’s a great signing for the club.

“I can personally learn a lot from him and so can a lot of other players as-well. He’s very professional.

“Andrew is quite open to helping anyone, if he has any advice then I feel like he will tell me. It’s very good.

“Also, I feel like doing things together as a squad like bowling helps a lot. It’s the little things that you can learn about your teammates and it helps the squad chemistry massively.”

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