Joe Willock has revealed he signed for Newcastle United after hitting it off with Steve Bruce over a Zoom call.
The incoming Arsenal midfielder is expected to make his Toon debut against Southampton on Saturday with the 21-year-old excited about his loan deal until the end of the season.
Willock has tasted the St James’ Park experience before after making his Premier League debut for the Gunners against the Magpies in a 2-1 defeat back in 2018.
When asked about his move to Tyneside, Willock said: “For me, it was when I first spoke to the manager Steve Bruce he spoke to me and gave me brilliant confidence to come here and try to make a difference.
“That was my first initial thought and I felt that this was the club that I wanted to go to.
“Then it developed and everything went smoothly but now I am here and ready to start the new journey.
“The manager asked me how I was and how training was.
“He was very humorous with me, he made a few jokes, I’m a funny guy and I love to have jokes.
“It was a conversation starter but then he spoke about he was going to use me, where he sees me in the team, he had a whole plan for me already.
“I was really shocked, it’s the first time I’ve had a manager who had a whole plan for me.”
However, Willock’s move to the North-East proved to be a frantic affair as the switch only just beat the clock on deadline day.
Willock added: “We agreed to go as a family on the last day.
“From then I went training, my father came back and said we are getting it all done by tonight.
“It was really smooth so I knew it was the right place I was going to go to.
“I have been with Arsenal since I was four and a half so it is a bit daunting to take that step away from the comfort zone, but when a big club like Newcastle call I didn’t have much hesitation.
“I’d love to play for a big team and if I can make a difference that would be brilliant.”
Willock also says that Newcastle is always a club that holds a special place in his heart after debuting in the top-flight three years ago.
Willock told NUFC TV: “There’s some legends who have played here and they a really big history.
“They’re a team that I’ve always watched.
“When I made my debut here I remember being so scared because of the fans, it feels like they’re on top of you.”