Mick Tait has a new job scouting young players for Newcastle United.
Peter Beardsley – now Football Development Manager at Newcastle
And we reported earlier this morning his job is to look for any late developers in the region, so that we ensure we don’t lose players like Bobby Charlton and Alan Shearer to other clubs.
And one good example of a late developer in football is Peter Beardsley, who was at Carlisle United from 1979 through 1982 and was then at Vancouver Whitecaps for a year though 1983 when he signed for Newcastle United.
At the time he signed for Newcastle for £150K, he was four months away from his 23rd birthday.
Mick Tait started his career at Oxford United and then moved to Carlisle United in 1977, and he talks today of that young player who was there in 1979 – Peter Beardsley.
“The best players are the obvious ones, and I’ll get stick for saying this again because I always bang on about it.” “But the first time I saw Peter Beardsley play I thought ‘There’s a footballer’.”
“He came to Carlisle when I was there, we trained and I saw it straight away. One training session, that’s all it took.” “Clubs have players for months and can’t make up their minds, but Peter was different.’
“I know a lot of people didn’t see it, because he went a long time without getting a club.” “But the first time I saw him kick a ball I thought ‘He’s a player’.”
Mick was at Carlisle United from 1977 through 1979 and Peter Beardsley was there from 1979 through 1982 before joining the Vancouver White Caps.
Peter stayed at Vancouver only for one year and he moved to Newcastle for the first time in September of 1983, and he stayed on Tyneside for four seasons and left Newcastle for Liverpool in 1987.
Peter rejoined Newcastle, who were then managed by Kevin Keegan, in 1993.
Peter is now the Football Development manager at Newcastle, after being promoted from his former position as the Newcastle Reserve team manager.
Tait is now coaching at Gateshead College’s Football Academy, and being born in Wallsend he knows the area well, and is ideally positioned to scout local talent for Newcastle United.
“I’ve always enjoyed picking players, the recruitment side’s always been really important to me,” “Even when I’ve been a manager and a coach I’ve prided myself on going out and getting good players.”
“It’s about spotting someone with a bit of talent. Other people might say ‘Yeah but he’s not aggressive’ or ‘He doesn’t head it very well’.” “But these are things you can maybe put into his game. I look for lads who are technically very good.”
“Working at Gateshead College, I see a lot of youth football. These lads might have dropped away from professional clubs for whatever reason but we look after them and nudge them back the way.”
“The Premier League’s a different ball game but we have got a few back into the likes of Darlington, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough, people like Adam Reach.” “There’s always a second chance – it’s how much they want to do it. In the end it’s down to them.”
It will be interesting over the next couple of years to see how many local lads can come through the ranks at Newcastle.
It seems a number of local lads are being let go in the summer, and they include Newcastle-born Ryan Donaldson, Ashington-born Jeff Henderson, Newcastle-born Dan Taylor and Amble-born Phil Airey.