'Terrifying': Mike Brown fears losing job after Newcastle decision
BT Sport rugby commentator Nick Mullins has confirmed that ex-England full-back Mike Brown is on the lookout for a new employer after Newcastle Falcons decided not to activate their option to keep the 36-year-old on at the Gallagher Premiership club for a second season. The veteran is due to start at full-back on Friday night at The Stoop, the home ground of Harlequins where he played for his entire club career until last summer’s emotional move north.
Brown has been busy across this season with Newcastle, starting in 14 of their 17 league and European Challenge Cup games prior to this weekend’s trip to London. But that workload hasn’t been enough to convince Dean Richards to keep Brown on at Kingston Park.
TV commentator Mullins make the trek north by train from London to Newcastle at the start of this week to interview Brown as part of the BT Sport coverage of the Friday night live game between Harlequins and the Falcons and he put his thoughts about the trip into words on Twitter.
“My favourite clock in the world. Heading north for a day’s filming with someone who has an emotional week ahead of them @btsportrugby #trainspotting,” tweeted Mullins on February 28.
A second post later that day read: “And back again. After a raw, honest & emotional couple of hours with Mike Brown as he starts the process of looking for a new club next season. Quins V Newcastle, Friday @btsportrugby”
And for all the apparent glitz & glamour of professional sport, losing your job is as terrifying as it is for me, you & our families. Hope you take something from Mike’s honesty on Friday evening. pic.twitter.com/uXWrOZcXmk
— Nick Mullins (@andNickMullins) February 28, 2022
The broadcaster then posted a third tweet: “And for all the apparent glitz & glamour of professional sport, losing your job is as terrifying as it is for me, you & our families. Hope you take something from Mike’s honesty on Friday evening.”
BT Sport have now posted the full video:
"If it was just me, I wouldn't have emotion I don't think. "
"It's when you've got to go home and tell your wife that you've got to move again."
This is the side of sport you don't often see. pic.twitter.com/t4DqqUfzyY
— Rugby on BT Sport (@btsportrugby) March 4, 2022
The Newcastle decision to offload Brown will come as a surprise as it was only a few weeks earlier at a media briefing that Richards, who previously coached the player when they both worked together at Harlequins, spoke highly about their summer 2021 recruit.
Asked by RugbyPass how Brown was doing in his first season at Newcastle, Richards replied: “Mike has done well. We have had a number of injuries in the back three, so at 30-whatever-he-is to be able to get out week in week out he is incredibly durable and sets a good standard.
“He captained us over in Biarritz. We normally use European games to blood youngsters but we have had quite a few injuries in the back three, so he probably has played a little bit more. All the senior players are willing to get out there and mentor the youngsters. Toby (Flood) in his years, Mark (Wilson) has done it. With all the senior players there is an expectation to mentor the youngsters and spend time with them.”
Set to turn 37 next September, the 72-cap ex-England back will now be wondering if he can somehow continue his career elsewhere at his age or will this decision by Newcastle spell the end of his time as a player. Options elsewhere in the Premiership will likely be restricted given the cutbacks in the league due to the reduced salary cap.
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