Probably the only thing that’s in the least exciting about our current squad is the many excellent youngsters we have at the club.
Nile Ranger – ready for the first team?
And one of the most exciting prospects we have is 18 year-old 6’2″ striker Nile Ranger, who we signed from Southampton last August, and who had a terrific first season on Tyneside.
He has since gone on the play for the England U19 side and was playing for them in the finals of the European Championships on Monday in the Ukraine, which the lads lost 2-0 to the host country.
He is a couple of years younger than local 6’5″ striker Andy Carroll, who yesterday was selected for the England U21 squad for the first time.
It would not be surprising if these two youngsters play a lot of first team games for the side next season, and of course both are very exciting prospects.
Nile told the Evening Chronicle yesterday:
“That’s what I am aiming for – it’s great playing for England, but I was dying to get back to Newcastle.”
“It’s an awesome experience playing for England.” “Everybody would love to play for England and I’m no different.”
“Ukraine was a good experience, but it was very hot and the food wasn’t very nice.” “I am just buzzing to be back, come on and score.”
“Now I’m just hoping to be on the bus on Friday to go to West Brom.” “I don’t know if I will be in the squad and I won’t take anything for granted.”
“I just have to show Chris Hughton what I’ve got.”
Ranger had to keep pleading with local Geordie coach Alan Thompson for a run out in the 4-2 win over Blyth at Croft Park on Tuesday night, and he managed to score in the final minute of that friendly game.
“I didn’t think I’d get on.” “Alan Thompson was saying ‘you’re not coming on’.” “But I told him I wanted to get on for 10 minutes and he threw me in there!
“It was great ball in from Phil Airey – he’s a good player and it was a nice little dink.” “I held off the defender – I could have gone down for a penalty but I stayed on my feet and fired home.”
Meanwhile, coach Alan Thompson believes that Ranger has a great chance of being involved in the first team squad for the game with WBA this Saturday:
“Chris is looking at him in the next few days.” “He’ll see how he looks in training to see whether he travels with the first team to West Brom.”
“We’ve seen plenty of him to know he’s a threat, but Chris Hughton will monitor him to see if he is going to travel to West Brom.”
What we need is for Nile to get on sometime during the game on Saturday and maybe score a goal or two in a Newcastle win.
Wouldn’t that be something?
Time for a little celebration, no doubt, after a summer of absolute torture for the Newcastle fans.
After all, things have to level out soon – don’t they? 😀