Newcastle United's Jason Tindall makes no apology for ‘Mad Dog’ antics as he fills in for Eddie Howe

Newcastle United assistant Jason Tindall has explained his touchline antics ahead of the Magpies clash encounter with Luton on Saturday. Credit: PA

Newcastle United assistant manager Jason Tindall has made no apologies for getting under the skin of opposition managers on the touchline.

The 46-year-old 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 Newcastle 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.

Tindall discussed his touchline antics ahead of the Magpies encounter with Luton Town on Saturday as he took over media duties from an ill Eddie Howe.

Eddie Howe and Jason Tindall have a strong relationship on the touchline. Credit: PA

“It’s not deliberate. I’m just me," he explained. “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 made an impression since joining Howe at St James’ Park 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, caught the eye again after Tuesday night’s impressive win at Aston Villa when Unai Emery appeared to snub his handshake.

Jason Tindall's touchline antics have made him popular with Newcastle fans but less so with opposition managers. Credit: PA

“If someone doesn’t want to shake my hand at the end of the game, then I’m not in control of that," Tindall said. "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.”

Tindall's actions have made him popular with Newcastle fans but he is adamant he will not let him get carried away it.

“I take it all with a pinch of salt," he said. "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 dugout against Luton and may have a bigger squad to choose from with Harvey Barnes and Callum Wilson approaching returns.

Alexander Isak could also be involved despite being subbed with a groin injury of the first half of the 3-1 win over Villa on Tuesday while Joe Willock is also close to regaining fitness.

Harvey Barnes could return for Newcastle against Luton. Credit: PA

Tindall expects the Magpies to face a tough challenge against the Hatters who won the reverse fixture 1-0 at Kenilworth Road in December. The club travel to the North East in good form having thrashed Brighton 4-0 in midweek.

"You have to give Luton a lot of credit," Tindall said. "They have been on a really good run, they have shown they are a hard team to play against, they are a dangerous team.

"Credit to Luton for the way they have been performing but our main focus is on us and we want to go out there and get the best result."

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