The Newcastle United Blog

News and Commentary On Newcastle United By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

The Newcastle United Blog header image 2
Howay The Lads!!

Newcastle To Recruit Top Teenagers This Summer

10:21 am, Saturday, April 27th, 2013 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 24 Comments

Since Mike Ashley initiated his concentration on the Youth Academy, which was announced by then Chairman Chris Mort in January, 2008, we’ve been disappointed that we haven’t seen more young players come through and be part of the first team squad.

kevin mbabu 98732

17 year-old Kevin Mbabu joined in January

And a lot of players we had high hopes for –  like Tamas Kadar, Ben Tozer, Phil Airey and Ryan Donaldson = are no longer at the club, and  other former promising players like Mehdi Abeid, James Tavernier and Brad Inman may leave Newcastle soon.

So the record is not too good, but Newcastle will be bringing in some top 17 and 18 year olds this summer,  and the influx started with 17 year-old defender Kevin Mbabu in January.

Newcastle want to increase the standards of the Newcastle U21 side, and the plan is to recruit top teenagers to play in that league next season.

And when we suffered from so many injuries this season the youngsters who came in did not play well, and didn’t seem to be ready for first team football and now we have a number of them – like Sammy Ameobi, Shane Ferguson, Brad Inman, Conor Newton, Paul Dummett and Brad Inman out on loan to lower league clubs.

Willie Donachie runs the Newcastle U21 side, and he seems happy about the coming influx of new players:

“That’s the plan. The current lot are getting older and more experienced but we’ll be looking to strengthen it.” “It is exciting times really. We have a lot of good young players.”

“We have six out at the moment and most of them have played in major cup finals. And they’re getting Football League or SPL experience at first-team level.” “The Under-21 league isn’t seen as strong enough for those players to play in.”

“When you get to 20 or 21 you are too old anyway. We’ll be getting players who are 17 or 18 that are good enough for the Under-21 league.”

The Newcastle scouting system under Graham Carr has done very well, but one area we need improvement in is recognizing top young teenage talent – and we have not been too successful at that over the last five years or so.

What do you think?

Follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook and +1 us on Google+:

You can also reach Ed at


Tags: Ben Tozer · Newcastle Academy · Newcastle News · Newcastle U21 · Phil Airey · Ryan Donaldson · Tamas Kadar

24 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Krul to be Kind // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:29 AM

    On the Valderama pics on the previous thread, If anyone is into football documentaries I highly recommend a show called the 2 Escobars, the full show is on youtube and is a magical watch on the rise and fall of Columbian football and drug cartels.

    Highly highly recommended if you have a spare hour or so, it shows the highlights of one of the copa libertadores finals in the 80?s which is the football version of rocky!

  • 2 Krul to be Kind // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:33 AM

    does anyone know how Mbabu is getting on in the development squad? Is he playing? Does he look anyway decent? all info and opinions welcome!

  • 3 Black and White with an army lol // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:35 AM

    i think carr needs to scout South America for young players you’ll never know we could get a Neymar type player over there

  • 4 Ibizatoon - Back By Popular Demand // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:36 AM

    Krul…Sounds a good one. Will take a look.

    On Mbabu, there was an article out recently on him, but tbh don’t think it was overly informative. Maybe it was the reserve game last week, when Obertan got his hat trick?!?

  • 5 Mark the Mag // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:38 AM

    Fans remember Tav, for the goal in Greece, but I thought he was superb against manure in the league cup, and a definite star of the future. He was a class act in that game MOM for me but never got a fair chance, much better than simple simmo, but hey he’s not one of Pardrew pet bum boys, so looks like we lose a player with good first team potential imo.

  • 6 Krul to be Kind // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:39 AM


    If you think the Tyne-Wear derby is passionate your jaw will drop watching what goes on in south America!

  • 7 Black and White with an army lol // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:40 AM

    maybe we should look at Velez in Argentina they have 2 young amazing players Allio and Romero they could easily break into our first team.

    Allio- RW
    Romero- CM-DM

  • 8 davetoon // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    yeah 2 Escobars was part of the espn series. great doco

  • 9 Ibizatoon - Back By Popular Demand // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    Krul…So should I expect some animal beating then?

    Mark…Wasn’t so impressed by Tav tbh. Some raw potential, but really should have been out on loan getting some experience imo.

  • 10 Mark the Mag // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    Watched chelsea v Liverpool youth cup, these kids are way ahead of anything we ever produce, or probably ever will. Look out for Kiwomiya from chelsea looks a real talent.

  • 11 Krul to be Kind // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:45 AM


    Romero is an argentine international I believe, and highly thought of too if it is the same player so wouldn’t come cheap.

    But on the south America thing, I don’t know why we haven’t tapped into that market lots of these kids coming through have some ties to a European country which should make visas that little bit easier, and they don’t come anymore technically gifted than SA, but I have a feeling it is because of the strong growing markets in SA that the players are not moving abroad as much

  • 12 Cisse's Big Toe // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    looks like abeid is off, kets will hang himself

  • 13 davetoon // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    wtf. just saw lawro tipped newcastle.

  • 14 Krul to be Kind // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    Ibiza – defo not any animal cruelty haha, but it puts Suarez’s actions into perspective

    Dave – great show, but a little depressing that I remember the era!

  • 15 Black and White with an army lol // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    Krul to be Kind

    mate i think your on about Romero Argentina goalkeeper, the 2 lads i mentioned are 17-18 years old

  • 16 Mark the Mag // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:48 AM

    All the youngster should have been out on loan before now, sammi, fergie, major errors. People judge Tav on Brighton and Artomis in Greece, but anyone who seen him play left back at manure in the league cup, would have to say he was outstanding, really comfortable on the ball.

  • 17 Hatem's better than Messi // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:49 AM

    It seems a waste of time and money buying teenagers to develop.
    We’re either not good at picking talent or our coaches aren’t very good.

    Better to save the cash and buy players like Haidara for 1-2M who are ready to join the first team squad.
    I’m beginning to think KK was right about the reserves/U21.

  • 18 davetoon // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    yeah always depressing when a good person goes before their time when so many others continue to thrive

  • 19 Newcastle Brown Alien // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:50 AM
    would love this boy

  • 20 Krul to be Kind // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:51 AM

    B&W – I know of the keeper, he moved from Holland to turkey recently I believe, but don’t know which clubs, there might be another south American Romero (infact I think the one I’m talking about is Brazilian), but he defo isn’t the same one if he is 17/18.

  • 21 toonarmydownsouth // Apr 27, 2013 at 10:55 AM

    No I remember tav as the less the impressive Simpson downgrade, after a fair few matches this season he had one decent half vs manure?
    Greece was awful but Brighton confirmed why he won’t make it, to see a 20 yr old professional athlete get skinned over and over and over by an elderly gentleman named Wayne bridge never seen such a woeful performance from a ‘potential star’
    The lad must be near on 21 now, the club only offered him a 3 year contract when they were handing out 5, 6, 8 year contracts to me that doesn’t speak to greatly for him, neither does the fact he’s never played above league 1

  • 22 Mark the Mag // Apr 27, 2013 at 11:01 AM

    Tads, he nearly left in summer, but then the club offered him a new contract, would have liked to see him play more, but only time will tell, but it doesn’t look like he will get a chance here.
    Shame as I thought he could be a squad player.

  • 23 Mark the Mag // Apr 27, 2013 at 11:07 AM

    Tads everyone struggled against Brighton,
    Wow you must be good they gave u a 5, 6 and 8 year contract, a 19 year contract, ur set for life, hope ur better than Shola son.

  • 24 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Apr 27, 2013 at 3:55 PM

    Hello 😀

previous post: New Frenchman Could Become Newcastle Captain

next post: Newcastle vs Liverpool – Match Preview