Alan Pardew has said this morning that Shane Ferguson was a little bonus for Newcastle through the end of this season.
Shane Ferguson – impressed last season
In his best season ever, the 19 year-old ended up making 9 first team appearances for the club, and did extremely well when he was brought in to replace the injured Jose Enrique at left back.
And he was rewarded yesterday with a nice five year contract, and is the first player to sing a new deal this summer.
He certainly impressed manager Alan Pardew, who had this to say about the 19 year-old Derry-born player today:
“We’ve had a little bonus with Shane Ferguson towards the end of the season,” “He produced a couple of really good performances and they certainly suggest he’s going to be in and around the team next season.”
“That’s great news for us, because there’s nothing better than producing a player yourself and watching him grow and progress in the first team.”
“Of all the young players, Shane has been the one that’s surprised me in terms of the speed of his development. It’s all very well catching the eye in training, but he’s actually done it out there in the cut and thrust of a Premier League game.”
“We’ve got a lot of good young players at the training ground, but to actually go out and play amongst men is what it’s about.
“It’s a really good sign that he’s been able to do that at such an early stage of his career. He’s got good pace and athleticism, and that’s a good start for any player wanting to play in the position he plays.”
Ferguson is a full Northern Ireland international, but manager Nigel Worthington now expects Ferguson to select Ireland from now on, although that decision has not been formally made yet.
Newcastle have a lot of good young players at the club but this boy has surprised everybody this season, and probably himself too.
Although the 5’11” Irishman often looks frail, he showed he can mix it up with the best of them in the Premier League, and a high protein diet over the summer should help build up the promising youngster.
And he will probably be doing some weight training in the gym too.
He will be pushing for a first team place next season, Shane is already that good, and given he can play at left back or left wing he could rack up the first team appearances next season.
It’s good to have somebody sign a Newcastle contract these days. 😀