We noticed that Nile Ranger was on the bench on Wednesday night at Blackburn.
Nile Ranger – back in the first team squad
And we thought he must have been behaving himself, and news today that he is indeed back in the first team squad, after being away for three months.
It turns out that Ranger returned to the first team squad a couple of weeks ago, and he has again been trying to improve his timeliness and attitude at the club.
But on a BBC Newcastle phone-in recently Alan Pardew said that Ranger was his sixth choice striker, so Nile still has a long way to go at Newcastle, and he could still be sold in January, or sent out on loan.
And similar to Andy Carroll before him he has a court case coming up for a drunk driving offense.
Nile played well for the Reserves against Liverpool Reserves last week, and his inclusion on the bench on Wednesday was for that good performance, plus his improved attitude.
Ranger has a contract through the summer of 2015, which he signed last October, but we think if there is interest in the 20 year-old striker in January, he could be on his way either in a permanent deal or out on loan to get some games.
Nile had this to say today about his predicament:
“It has been frustrating, but you just have to get on with it.” “You have ups and downs in your career and you just have to be strong enough to get through it.”
“I have not had the chance this season and I have not been told anything.” “My ultimate dream is still to play for Newcastle.”
We suppose Nile could still have a future on Tyneside if he knuckles down, trains hard, and shows some good form in the next couple of months, but he’s unlikely to get many games for the first team, with so many strikers in front of him in the pecking order at Newcastle.
Maybe a loan deal in January would be the best for both parties at this stage, and then we can see how he does at some Championship club.