Newcastle United Loan Signing Stretches Credibility
Recent times have seen Newcastle a lot more active in the loan signing market, both incoming and outgoing.
Last season was mixed to say the least, in terms of those coming into St.James’ Park, Luuk De Jong was an absolute disaster while Loic Remy was the exact opposite, unless you take into consideration he had no intention of staying and Mike Ashley had no intention of paying the price on the ticket.
When it came to those out on loan, Conor Newton had another very good season at St.Mirren but has now left the club, Curtis Good did well until injury intervened, while Medhi Abeid and James Tavernier were undoubtedly the biggest successes as they qualified for Champions League football and promotion to the Championship respectively – though still neither of them appear to have any future at Newcastle United.
As for the rest of the young players who went out on loan, it has been pretty dismal, though there is one of those negative stories that is bizarrely trying to be turned into a positive.
Speaking to the Chronicle, Lee Clark had this to say about Shane Ferguson’s loan season at Birmingham;
“I was really happy with what Newcastle did for me and Shane was outstanding in flashes early in the season.
“Overall though, in terms of consistency, we couldn’t get him to the level.
“We worked him extremely hard in training but we just found it difficult – I’m hoping it will have all been a good experience for him.
“I know he was watched numerous times by Newcastle so they’ll have a dossier in how they thought he performed.
“I was in constant dialogue with Steve Stone and John Carver about how he was doing, we’d have preferred Shane to play more games.
“I’ve a job to do in terms of picking a team and must do what I see right, there was never any pressure from Newcastle United to play Shane.
“Hopefully he can use last season’s experience to kick on again.”
Talk about grasping at straws.
Newcastle gave a number of young players long-term deals and are no paying the price of being stuck with them.
Shane Ferguson only started nine league matches (only 2 after November) for Birmingham last season and they were the fourth worst team in the Championship, avoiding relegation on goal difference. The player will be 23 when next season kicks off and is contracted until June 2016) 3 weeks before his 25th birthday.
There are 18 and 19 year olds going to the World Cup with England, players such as Ferguson and Adam Campbell, who couldn’t get a game for St.Mirren last season, are not going to suddenly become Premier League players.
The ridiculously long contracts that have been give to young players have by and large being simply to try and make it appear that there is some sort of credible development policy at Newcastle.
As well as the likes of Ferguson and Nile Ranger getting awarded a long-term contract, I would include Paul Dummett as well in terms of an overly long contract. For young players who have shown so little, surely a two year contract is more than enough and they can keep topping it up as they go along.
Anything would be better than this false front of everything being great with Newcastle’s youth development because it isn’t.
Of course we all hope that Adam Armstrong and others can come through but it would be football suicide if Mike Ashley believes younger unproven players can be a mainstay of Newcastle’s squad next season.
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