Adam Armstrong turned 20 years of age last month and fair to say he has found it a bit more difficult this season.

Last year he went to Coventry City as an 18 year old and scored a magnificent 20 League One goals, surely way beyond what anybody at Newcastle United could have hoped for.

This season, Newcastle wanted to see him tested at a higher level but limited the options to the three clubs promoted from League One, with the intention of not inadvertently helping another promotion hopeful.

Barnsley have exceeded their own expectations and hung around the fringes of the play-off spots, only recently dropping away to be in eleventh position currently.

As for Adam Armstrong himself, five league goals this season shows that he hasn’t had it as easy, those goals coming in 17 Championship starts and eight appearances off the bench.

However, Barnsley boss Paul Heckingbottom says that ‘nobody works harder’ than Adam Armstrong.

Heckingbottom adding that with both Adam Armstrong and his loan club having moved up a division, it has been an extra challenge.

For Rafa Benitez it is all good news as the South Yorkshire club are looking after him for the future, with the Barnsley Manager saying that they are ‘doing lots of things with him’, looking to ‘open his eyes to different types of goals he needs to score’, which will help Adam Armstrong counter those who try to stop him in the future.

Paul Heckingbottom:

“Nobody works harder (than Adam Armstrong).

“We are doing lots of things with him, watching videos to try and open his eyes to different types of goals he needs to score.

“We have jumped up a league, he has jumped up a league, and he doesn’t just want to be an impact player.

“He wants to score different types of goals and is definitely a player people will try and target and try to stop.

“You then have to adapt, score different types of goals.

“He is in one of those runs where it’s just not quite going his way – that can change at any point.”

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  • Alex

    Hope he has a decent career, but it won’t be with Newcastle.

    • Anita kick up the Hoop

      He should be .. but can’t see him fitting Raffa’s structure .. which is sad.

      • Kazie

        A perfect partner with him would be a Carroll or Torress type of player that will link up the play with and for him.

  • Simon Ritter

    Players develop at different speeds. I reckon Adam Armstrong will prove the doubters wrong. Peter Beardsley was not exactly tearing up trees at 20 and look what he became.

  • Mark Scott

    So much pressure on this lad to be the next Pedro. However, at 20yo and with his record this season having finally stepped up a level, it would seem that he isn’t there yet and probably needs to head elsewhere to step out of the St James’ shadow. Time is certainly still on his side as Simon pointed out, but the older he gets the less likely I think he’s going to get a chance here. Shame as i’d love to have seen him given a chance with some better players providing the ammunition he needs…he’s clearly not getting the chances where he is right now.

  • Anita kick up the Hoop

    He’s a natural number 10.. he should play off a proper centre forward and he should have been used here rather than Diame

    • 1957

      I agree, he couldn’t do the lone striker role Rafa loves and needs to play with or behind a main striker. This might be his undoing at NUFC under the present manager.

    • Kazie

      His a Rooney or Aguero type of player…

  • TubbyMunky

    I just hope that the press/fans expectations don’t put too much pressure on him.