Newcastle’s Youth Policy Has Failed Miserably

It’s likely this summer that we will be seeing former top youngsters leave the club. and they will probably include Shane Ferguson, Conor Newton, James Tavernier, Haris Vuckic, Michael Richardson, Mehdi Abeid and even Adam Campbell.

adam armstrong fulham

Adam Armstrong – our current best young hope?

It also looks like a top young player we acquired two years ago – Gael Bigirimana – could also be taking the Newcastle exit door.

Newcastle put an emphasis on youth back in January of 2008, shortly after Mike Ashley had bought the club, but even though we have brought in many good young players the club have been unsuccessful in bringing even one of them through to play regularly for the first team, and maybe Sammy Ameobi is the closest we’ve got to doing that.

Probably Newcastle’s best younger players at the moment are local lad Adam Armstrong and Freddie Woodman, who became European U17 Champions with England yesterday, when we beat (thrashed?) the Netherlands on penalties, after a 1-1 draw in normal time.

20 year-old Australian International center-back Curtis Good is also one who will probably be a starter for Australia in the World Cup this summer in Brazil,  and is top young player right now.

But we have brought in so many youngsters who have failed, and over the last six years they have included  Brad Inman, Ben Tozer, Fabio Zamblera, Jeff Henderson, Joan Símun Edmundsson, Kazenga Lua Lua, Ole Soderberg, Ryan Donaldson, JJ Hooper, Andy Mogwo, Samuel Adjei, Tamas Kadar, Wesley Ngo Baheng and Yven Moyo.

And now this summer we will probably add Shane Ferguson, Conor Newton, James Tavernier, Haris Vuckic, Michael Richardson, Mehdi Abeid to that rather long list.

So something is not working at Newcastle, as far as bringing young players through the ranks, and it’s a vital part of Newcastle’s strategy to compete with the top six clubs in England.

If Newcastle are serious about bringing through the younger players, then they have to admit that what they have been doing over the last six years simply hasn’t worked.

And they must now do something constructive and positive about it – do things differently – look at how and why other clubs have been successful with their youngsters – to try to turn it all around.

We just have to hope that the Youth Academy and our failure to develop young players into first teamers at Newcastle, was discussed at the end of season meeting between Alan Pardew and the Newcastle Board, and that the problems were pinpointed and a plan put in place to improve things.

We really hope that happened.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.