As the club looks to settle into a new era, there is another underlying challenge which has been failed to be addressed, what is happening with the Newcastle United young players?
The current regime stated the importance of youth in the development of the club, but with an U21 side which is continually failing, yet again we face a future where nobody develops into the first team.
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This may be overstating the point as players such as Aarons start to sniff around the first team, but he is the exception, not the rule.
While we have focussed on the disaster which is the first team this year, our under 21s have a record of 3 wins, 4 draws and 11 defeats this year. The attention on Peter Beardsley has been around his defending of the regime, but seriously, how can his coaching record be defended?
It may not be Beardsley but the set-up which is rotten. Either way though there is a need for change and if the personnel are not going to, then the way the youth set-up is run must be.
We cannot continue to send all of our youth team out on loan, they must be developed to play in the style of the team so that they can step up. If we are not going to invest in depth of squad then surely make sure the youngsters can step up.
A prime example of the failure is Adam Campbell. A player who only played 5 times (all as a substitute) for the first team but was flagged as an example of failure by John Carver on many occasions.
This is a player who is still only 20 years old but while still at the club is being treated as an outcast. For god’s sake he even found out he’d officially been released via Twitter from what we’ve heard! Surely if we act like this we are never going to attract the best youngsters?
Even Adam Armstrong, who is only 18 remember, is getting told by Carver that he isn’t good enough for the first team one day, then thrown in front of the press in the place of our club captain the next.
Can you imagine Sir Bobby doing that?
He would have been telling him how great his ability was and nurturing his development. It is not only about coaching at that level but about man-management.
When the reserves played Stoke on Sky earlier this season I was impressed at the individual ability on show at that level, as Bigi ran the midfield and Callum Roberts marauded down the wing.
However, both players were loaned out to clubs where they would never get the coaching needed to develop. None of the young players on show that night have had a sniff of the first team this season.
In a month where we see three Wor Jackie Award winners (Alnwick, Streete, Ameobi) as well as a Jack Hixon award winner (Campbell) all potentially leaving the club (three of them released), we must have a serious look beyond the first team and into the future of our club.
If your son was a footballer would you seriously recommend Newcastle, or would you look at Southampton, Norwich and Ipswich?
There is undoubted talent in our youth ranks and we need to invest to bring it through. While I’m not expecting Gazza and Waddle to appear every season, we are barely getting a Taylor, Ramage or Caldwell any more.
There should always be 4 or 5 players capable of stepping up, but instead those who should be filling the bench (Vuckic, Bigiramana, Campbell) are being loaned out and adding no value. Potential is not turning into Premier League players but why not?
It is time for a clear out both of players and coaches. Start over again and invest in nurturing the undoubted talent which exists in the region rather than just filling the club with bodies.
The 11 Geordies on a pitch may never happen but at the moment it’s not even something we can dream of!