Jason Tindall is making no apologies for getting under the skin of opposition managers after unwittingly becoming an online sensation.
Newcastle boss Eddie Howe’s assistant has found himself thrust into the limelight as a result of his antics on the sideline, which have prompted a series of social media memes and earned him the nickname “Mad Dog”.
In the process, he has found cult status with Magpies supporters and established himself as the man opposition fans – as well as some managers – love to hate, although he insists he has not deliberately sought confrontation.
Taking over media duties from head coach Howe, who was unwell, ahead of Saturday’s Premier League clash with Luton, Tindall said: “It’s not deliberate. I’m just me.
“I won’t stop being me all of a sudden because of what people say about me and what they tell me to do. If anyone thinks that’s going to stop me behaving like me or stop me being my real self, that’s not going to happen.
“Listen, I don’t mean to get under the skin of opposing managers or deliberately upset anyone. All I’m interested in doing is helping Newcastle United win football matches.
“Once kick-off is there, that’s my only motivation and the goal is to do everything in my power to help the team. If that upsets a few people along the way, then so be it.”
Tindall has certainly made an impression since joining Howe at St James’ Park in November 2021 with Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp suggesting the rule change which allows only one member of coaching staff at a time to stand at the front of the technical area during matches had been brought in specifically to deal with Newcastle.
Howe’s long-term number two, who admitted the German was “probably” right, was the centre of attention once again after Tuesday night’s impressive win at Aston Villa when Villa boss Unai Emery appeared to snub his handshake.
Tindall said: “If someone doesn’t want to shake my hand at the end of the game, then I’m not in control of that. I wouldn’t personally do that myself, whereas some people act differently when they win compared to when they lose.
“That’s down to the individual, but I certainly don’t go out to cause that problem to begin with. If they don’t like what they see, no problem, I’m not offended by it.”
Jason Tindall on Alex Isak:
"Alex has improved. He will be one we have to assess today and take the advice from the medical team. He has a chance of making the game tomorrow." pic.twitter.com/HGrSRUzRov
— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) February 2, 2024
Tindall’s unexpected new-found celebrity – he is regularly serenaded by the Toon Army – may be unexpected, but he is adamant he will not be carried away by it.
He said: “I take it all with a pinch of salt. I don’t really take too much notice of what people say and put on social media. That’s part and parcel of doing this type of job where you’re in the spotlight.”
Howe is expected to be in the dug-out for the clash with the Hatters, and faces a series of late selections decisions with Alexander Isak, Callum Wilson, Harvey Barnes and Joe Willock all being assessed.