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Simon Smith left his position as head of goalkeeping at Newcastle United this summer after spending seven years at the club.

Smith had worked with Steve McClaren, Rafael Benitez, Steve Bruce and current manager Eddie Howe, while he had also served under Ruud Gullit and Sir Bobby Robson between 1999 and 2005 during his first stint coaching with the North East side.

After departing from Newcastle this summer, it took just a few weeks for Smith to be asked for his opinion on a former player.

Smith was relaxing at home in North Shields when he received a phone call from Manchester United's goalkeeping coach Richard Hartis. ALSO READ: The Man United player who made Premier League history in two seconds Smith, speaking to the Manchester Evening News, described Hartis as 'a very good friend and colleague', but this phone call was not an inconsequential conversation.

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